Diaries Magazine

Lisa in the Afternoon

Posted on the 09 May 2014 by Augustabelle
In the blink of an eye, my sister Lisa flew into NYC, stirred up a whole lot of trouble and magic and laughter, and then jetted off, just as swiftly as she had arrived, back home to L.A.  It was far too short of a trip, but isn't it always?
Lisa and I are only a year and a half apart, but she will always and forever be my baby sister.  Biet and Lou have a very similar age difference, and I often find myself wondering if they will know the camaraderie and connection that Lisa and I have always had.  I hope they will.
You see, Lisa is the kind of girl that makes you want to live.  She's the kind of girl who makes you want to dress up in your finest and stage a full blown photoshoot right in the middle of the city (we didn't get around to that... this time), sprint through the subways in a floor-length gown like you're in a movie as you run to catch a Broadway show, order the cheapest burger and the fanciest bottle of champagne in the same day just to say that you tried them, take photo booth pictures at four in the morning, and wander the quiet streets aimlessly in the inky shadowed hours of the city night, just because, until you've covered at least a handful of neighborhoods, accidentally happened upon a midnight riot with smoke bombs and police on horseback (which turns out to be an elaborate movie set in a should-have-been-closed city park of which the gates have been left open), and walk walk walk until your feet blister and you have to either walk home in the middle of the night barefoot like a crazy person or find a 24-hour Duane Reade for emergency bandaids (we may have actually done all of that... and we found the Duane Reade).  Lisa is one of those rare gems, a pearl of a girl, who inspires the world without even knowing it.  She's always up for an adventure.  She makes you laugh til you cry.  She sings weird old-timey songs as she puts on her make-up.  And she sends you the best cards on your birthday.
I'm lucky that she's my sister.
The other day Gaby was telling me about the notion, that is prevalent in his culture and that he always seemed to "know" when he was little, that babies choose the family that they're born into.  He said that when he was a very tiny child he always had a "knowing," a certainty of sorts, that he had chosen his Mom.  I found this idea so very beautiful.  I wonder, if it's true, if somehow my sisters and I all chose each other, in a way, then, too... It would certainly make a lot of sense if we did.
On Lisa's last afternoon in the city, we walked through the neighborhood together with Biet and Lou, up and down streets, down through Soho, up along the Bowery.  We found a million little places to go that made us both wish that she could stay here in the city with me forever.  We walked by Cafe Gitane, which was one of the first places we went to for lunch together when she first came to visit me over a decade ago, before the city had ingrained itself into my blood and before Lisa had created her big bright life our west, when we were just two young sisters with nothing to lose and everything to win, and taking ourselves out for lunch at a french cafe was oh so fancy.
Now I have a running list of a dozen "Cafe Gitane's" that we have to try, next time she's in town.  Sans kids, we'll run around the city and take each other out for lunch and then maybe to a gallery or show.  With lots to lose but even more to win, we'll parade and adventure side by side, probably until we're two old ladies with pillbox hats and pastel hair.
So come back soon Lisa, because I miss you terribly and it's nearly lunchtime. xx

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