I've had some 9 relationships prior to finding relsqui.
The first one was Ardene Latour. I'll never forget the last name because they weren't certain if that was actually their last name. Apparently her grandfather had an interesting past. She was my first kiss and all. She's also the one who taught me how pleasant perfume can be. Things sorta trailed off and she seemed a little disinterested. I've lost track of her for the most part. Five years later, I came across her at a party and she was really interested in me again, but we never managed to catch up and turn things into a friendship.
The second was Emily. We went on again/off again over the years. As it turned out, she was best friends with Ardene. We didn't go out for very long the first time, but later relationships were really nice. These days, she's married to some guy in the Navy and she's out East. I write an email every so often catching up with her.
The third was Hannah. She was best friends with Emily which set a funny trend. She was my first relationship of any significant period. She also cheated on me 3x in the relationship. Being silly and idealistic, I ignored reason and forgave her each time. Around the one year mark, she did it again, and didn't have any interest coming back to me.
I come across her every so often because she's still friends with my oldest friend Lindsay. I've often joked that Lindsay was the best thing I got from that relationship. She came up to UCSC briefly (I think I influenced her on that) and moved back to LA after graduating in Art History. Last I heard, she was a hairstylist.
A long while later, I ended up with Erica (#4). Erica was a funny case because initially she was frightened of me. I mean, I struck terror into her heart. We had a bunch of friends in common, so eventually she came to know me. We dated for a few months. I'm still not sure why we broke up, but we remained fairly good friends.
I'm somewhat out of touch with her now, but she stopped by my house while I was down on vacation for a while. I still have a picture of her in my wallet actually. She was going to UCLA and affianced the last I heard. I should give her a call in the near future and see what's going on.
My senior year of high school found me in AP Environmental Science. The first year it was offered no less. I had a neat teacher (Ms. Crawford) who ran a really off beat and interesting class. Mostly because it was a small class and she didn't really know what exactly to teach. We went to a student conference on water rights (near and dear to my heart as my father worked for the Department of Water and Power).
One of the people who ended up in my breakout group was a lovely girl named Veronique (#5). Our relationship was long distance and mostly over the phone. We used to have long debates about God's supposed existence. She was Catholic and kept telling me that I'd make such a great Catholic. Mostly because I knew more about her religion than she did.
Eventually she broke up with me. Partially because of that, although her reasons were that I didn't have a job, car, or money of my own at the time. I'll never forget that wording. Haven't spoken to her for any length of time since then. I've seen her on IM every so often (indeed, her name is still there), but she wasn't very interested in chatting.
Number 6 found me looking outside our country's borders. I was involved in Active Worlds at the time. It was still free and was a bunch of fun to play with. I still have a lot of friends from those days. One of my friends was a gal named Sprink. Through her, I met Briar. Her actual name was Liz and we clicked pretty well. The name Briar came from Sleeping Beauty. As you may know, the prince in Sleeping Beauty was Prince Philip (spelled correctly too!).
I had the money to do it, so I flew out to Toronto, Canada (where she lived). I stayed in a hostel for part of the time and ended up staying in her basement after I'd been properly introduced to her parents. Her family was really nice to me while I was there and I treasure that trip. About 3 months after I got back, I think the distance had gotten to her and she ended up breaking up with me for another guy. Communication's been sparse since then. I haven't talked to her in years now. I know she moved away from Mississauga, but I don't know where exactly.
Sarah was #7. We met at Spaceset. It's a competition at JPL. We got on pretty well during the breaks in the initial info dump on Mars. As it turned out, I ended up being president of the team that year (although I didn't want to). She ended up on my team. One night in September, she drove up to see me (she lived in Fullerton. An hour's drive or so) under the theory that I would help her with calculus. I recall helping her a bit and getting increasingly cuddlier.
She's the first girl I remember who was really really uber interested in me before we went out. She ended up going to UCSC. Like a lot of peopel who end up here, her brain fell out. I'm not sure how else to explain it. She went from normal, cute, and interesting SoCal girl to boring, dull hippie wannabe in nothing flat. She dumped me via phone on our one year anniversary. A bit later, she got the flowers I had sent to her.
I know she's up here somewhere (my housemate Carl has a class with her). I've spoken to her a bit, but not since she's gotten back from Spain. I'd like to keep in touch with her though.
Alex was #8. My friend Devin told me to seek her out when I first came up. She wrote the CS 12C lab manual and was interested in low level programming and hardware design which parallels my own interests. I first met her on the day of the School of Engineering Poster presentation. I had attended office hours for my CE 16 class and helped some folks out. I was talking to one of my fellow classmates (Ian) and he mentioned he was going to talk to her. Turned out they were good friends.
Over the summer, we ended up chatting over AIM due to a funny happenstance. I had her old IM handle and she accidentally logged in as it. We had a lovely conversation and got on well. At the time, I needed to find off campus housing in Santa Cruz, so I found an excuse to come up and "look for housing". Those few days were wonderful. She was wonderful. She was also my first.
Shortly after that was her birthday. I sent her flowers. We wrote poetry back and forth. Everything was marvelous.
When school started again, I drove up with my stuff and moved into the Armory. I remember pulling onto the 405 N in my '85 Chevy Celebrity. My mom was in the passenger seat since I'd only had my license for 4 months or so. I remember feeling like my life was opening up ahead of me. I had met the woman of my dreams and everything was going to fall into place so nicely for me.
We stopped at Baskin Engineering to pick her up so that I could introduce her to my parents and so on. After dinner at Takura, my parents went back to the hotel. I took Alex out to a bar and played air hockey over a couple of drinks. I let a few in to keep the game close.
We went back to my place for a bit. She wanted to stay over, but I had only met one of my four housemates, so I decided it was probably better not to. I drove her home and set my computer up when I got back.
The next afternoon, I IM'd her when I woke up and said hello. I remember she asked when she could see me again. I arranged to pick her up from work (she was working on Hughey's Kestrel project) and off we went. She seemed strangely distant the whole night. After dinner, we came back to my place and she spent most of the time silent and on my computer. I drove her back to her place and she asked me to walk with her a bit.
She dumped me there at the end of Bellevue Street, a block from her house. I never knew why, but I spent the night crying and trying to think of some way to put things back in place. In the end, it served only to distance her from me.
I found a bunch of reasons to come across her afterwards. Sometimes were friendlier than others. I wish we could rediscover that friendship again. Just friendship, mind you. I don't suffer a broken heart gladly, let alone breaking mine arbitrarily. Every so often I chat with her. They're almost always short and impersonal.
#9 was Stephanie. I'll write about her tomorrow.