The Big House

Once upon a time, four boys lived in a house in Oakland. Two were brothers, one was a high school friend, and the fourth wore cowboy boots.

At varying times, the people who lived in this house changed. I dated one of the brothers for three years, so a good amount of my college social life revolved around the house, even when roommates played musical rooms and two of the original ones moved out and the crazy meth head girl (another high school friend) moved in and her rats all mated and ate their babies and she would be up for 3 days without sleeping and didn’t pay the rent, and then they kicked her out.

I, myself, lived in this house officially for one summer (the summer College Boyfriend went to China), though I was there pretty much every night for about two years. During the time I lived there seven people lived in the house sharing one shower, and four were sweaty boys who were painting all summer. It was, shall we say, an interesting summer.

Anyhow, I have lots of stories about the Big House (as we called it, since it was a big house), but those will have to wait for another time. The purpose of this post is to write about the wonderful time I had hanging out with said brothers and another high school/college/Big House friend (aka the Irish German) when we were in California last weekend.

And yes, one of them was College Boyfriend. He and Irish German bought a house together in Oakland (for the purposes of fixing up and selling in a year or so) and they regularly hang out with Older, Somewhat Hairier Brother, and I hadn’t spent more than an hour or so with any of them in years. I called up the Irish German to let him know we’d be in town, and he arranged for the brothers to all hang out at the house on Sunday. It was, quite frankly, a lovely time.

I really enjoyed Hulk getting a chance to spend some time with these people who were some of my best friends in college (though I went to high school with all 3 of them, we weren’t close until we all moved to Berkeley). And I enjoyed meeting Irish German’s girlfriend, and catching up with all of them. We went out for Thai food; we played games and drank wine and I got to see the loveliest sheepish smile on Older Brother’s face when he told me his wife was pregnant (a baby blanket for said spawn, due in April, is already in the planning stages). I got to hear all about their lives now, and how the Irish German has acclimated back to living in the states now that he’s been back from Dublin for two years. We ate cherries and spat the seeds into their huge backyard/garden off the deck they all built themselves.

The best part was realizing how happy they all are in their adult lives. Older Brother is enjoying the challenges of owning his own business, providing for his wife and looking forward to baby (unplanned but not unwanted, and apparently concieved during wedding festivities of the Youngest Brother last summer). College Boyfriend continues to work for his brother, helping him run the business, spending time with his girlfriend of six years, and being solitary as necessary. And it warmed me up to see the Irish German with his girlfriend, since I’d never seen him in a relationship before (he’s had them, just none I’ve ever met). Three boys, now three men, living their lives and remaining friends and still all giving me wonderful hugs when we said goodnight.

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