This is not how I wanted my first blog for the year to be. I envisioned me giving you tales of bad experiences at some restaurant or at some all inclusive fete that I attended. Instead I am writing on the loss of a friend. A very good friend. Someone that I am missing a lot even right now
Zen Dionne Jarrette came into my life one February afternoon in 2007 while I was hanging out with my friend Reagan, Lylah and Nydra. She and Reagan had been best friends since high school and you would be amazed at the stories they have to tell on their experiences.
Anyway, I just remember being at the pool and this skinny girl with big breasts comes up to me and says..”Who are you and why don’t I know you?”
My response: “ Well, if you don’t know the answer then you need to talk to Jesus ‘cause I can’t help you”
She stared at me and proclaimed that we would get along fine. And so we did. We had a lot in common. We spoke at length about music, (songs from the past that I used think only my friend Matthew & I knew about), books, food and our obsession with the Chinese Race (that topic is for another blog at another time way in the future). It was really cool. She was amazing.
Reagan commented once that he found it strange that we both got along since we had such strong personalities and that Dionne always rubbed people the wrong way initially. Well she did rub me the wrong way initially but these things stopped bothering me along time ago. Once you got to know her, you just knew you were rubbing shoulders with someone that had DRIVE. Actually she was never in Drive she was always in Turbo Boost mode (for the Knight Rider fans).
She also reminded me of an aunt I lost about 12 years ago as they had the same smile and just the ability to draw me in completely. Sigh… I really miss her right now.
Within the last couple months we had taken up going to “51 degrees” on a Saturday night and making fun of everyone while grinding away to every slutty song that played. We would actually clear the floor when the song “Hot Gyal” came on. It was amazing how much fun we would have. If I danced with someone she did not approve of, she would come in front of me while dancing, stare intently at the girl I’m with and say, “Like yuh want meh to buss she face!!!” . While the terrified girl would try to run, I would always assure them that she was joking. It was hilarious. It’s been awhile since I had so much fun with someone.
With her, she always picked these lame looking dudes to dance with and if I objected she would ignore me. However, if some hulk of a brute approached her she would demand that I do my duty and use her line. Fearing for my life and the safety of my future unborn children, I would just grab her hand and pull her to me for a hug. It worked most of the time. The odd time it didn’t work the guy didn’t stay around not too long after that as I just stood there staring at them not blinking at all. LOL! How crazy was that?
I loved her. We were friends. Good friends. The only person I had to share her with was Reagan and well whatever lap dog of a guy that was trying to woo her (and failing miserablyat it) at the time but for the most part she was MINE!! (to be said like the seagulls in Finding Nemo)
She shared my disgust at the level of customer service we get in Trinidad and trust me when I say almost every experience I have spoken about she has been there with me. The Zanzibar incident was on her birthday (we’ve never been back since).
The last time we had dinner was last year around December 21st at Trotters. Trotters is/was the new hangout where we were certain service would be good. The food is not all there but the service is really good (plus they make a good brownie sandwich). She always had the “Brown Cow” Cheesecake as her starter and then everything else afterwards. Boy could she eat…….She had my appetite and the leanness that every fat person wishes they could have. We had dinner there and then she jetted off to New York.
The last time I saw her was at Outta de Blue fete on Saturday 5th January. She was covering it for the Guardian and I had gotten a free ticket and so I was playing “Media”. We spoke twice after that and then I went to Barbados for work on Wednesday. I got back home on Friday night and early Saturday morning (1am) Reagan called me to tell me that her family found her body in her apartment. I don’t know what happened nor do I think I really want to know. I am just at this point – hurting.
I haven’t cried at all and for most of Saturday I was in denial about the entire thing. I kept waiting for her to call me and for us to joke about something. I didn’t dare call her phone. I just couldn’t.
Then the calls started to come. Phone Numbers I didn’t know kept calling and asking me for information. They could not reach Reagan so they called my number. Huh? Where did they get my number from? I was not ready for the calls nor was I ready to deal with the truth of her being gone. I stopped answering my phone. I stayed indoors for as long as I could. It did not get better.
I got up at 4:16am Sunday morning and went into town to buy newspapers. She made the front page. She was accustomed to making the front page of the Guardian with her pictures but this was just a small line in the front: “Guardian Reporter die –see page 3”.
I read it. I read it over and over again and then I went back to sleep.
There is nothing more that I can say. I am not good at all in dealing with death. I just don’t know how to feel and even what to say. I’ve lost someone close to me and I can’t cry at all. I feel numb. Just numb. This is the most I’ve even spoken on the topic and I think it will be the last.
DIONNE I REALLY MISS YOU!!!!!!!
Now that you’re gone I can’t cry heard enough I can’t cry hard enough for you to hear me now
– Williams Brothers “Can’t Cry Hard Enough”
Who can say for certain
Maybe you’re still here
I feel you all around me
Your memories so clear
Deep in the stillness
I can hear you speak
You’re still an inspiration
Can it be (? )
That you are mine
And you are watching over me from up above
Fly me up to where you are
Beyond the distant star
I wish upon tonight
To see you smile
If only for awhile to know you’re there
A breath away’s not far
To where you are
-Josh Groban “To Where You Are”