She plays piano, sings, and taught herself how to strum chords on the guitar. Not me, my cousin-in-law, Sarah. We call her Goose. I still have no idea why. She, her sister, and her parents were the nearest family to Eddie and I for three years. On weekends, we drove up to stay with them and many holidays were spent together as well. It was nice having such wonderful people so close, able to just hop in the car and be there in a few short hours.
Over the years, Goose and I have discovered we are super-naturally alike. We haven’t quite figured out the cause yet, but we think it has something to do with the star's alignment when we were born. She and I were strangers only 3 short years ago, yet continue to discover that we have the same unique taste in music, movies, clothes, food, and pretty much anything else you can think of.
Our favorite song is Sentimental Journey. First of all, who under the age of 50 even knows that song? We have the same in depth discussion about the movie “Fried Green Tomatoes.” Is Mrs. Threadgood Idgy Threadgood? Or did she just marry into the family? Then what about her mysterious smile at the end? Most people haven't even seen that movie, let alone care so passionately about the family tree of the fictional characters. The movie, “Only You” inspired us both to visit Italy one day. We’re both on a “clear liquid” kick because we have some hang up that it’s healthier. And at a small town craft show, we both reached for a single pair of hand-knitted wrist warmers. Wrist warmers?! I let her have them because I was just so happy that someone else in the universe had my odd taste.
We used to be surprised when we discovered a new, outrageously random similarity between us. A few years ago, when Goose had long, luscious, red Julia Roberts hair and I finally managed to grow mine out just past my shoulders (an incredible feat for me considering I haven’t had my hair that long since 2nd grade), she came for a visit. Just before she arrived, I had the urge to chop my hair off completely. When she knocked on our front door, I prepared to defend myself once she saw that I had irrationally destroyed all my hard work for the past year. I opened the door, shocked to see her long hair cut to her ears as well. Come to find out that we probably hacked our hair off the same day.
We’re no longer surprised when we show up wearing the same shoes or adorable big buttoned denim jacket. We don’t blink anymore when we order the same thing off the menu. It doesn’t phase us when we break out in the exact same song in the exact same key. The shock wore off quickly when we found out that I ordered a “Teach yourself Tap Dance” video and she ordered a “Teach yourself Ballet” video online, again probably the same day. We're alike right down the brand of heat defense hair products we use.
Lately I’ve decided maybe it’s not so complicated as the cosmic galaxy aligned at birth or the moon and the tides in tune with us. It just may be that she is my friend away from my friends. My family away from my family. My sister away from my sisters.