In January 2008, very impulsively, I applied for an internship at Paramount Pictures in London. I had never been abroad. I had never thought about working in the Entertainment industry. It just seemed right. After months of trying, pestering and interviewing, I got it, and in June 2008, I was off to London. I got on the plane by myself, and 14 hours later, I met up with strangers in Amsterdam. (They were in my program, but we hadn't met before then, so it just sounds cooler if I say it the other way..)
I spent the summer working at the most exciting job I could ever imagine, going to movie premieres, traveling to different countries, making new friends, trying new things, and taking on new adventures at every turn. I even met up with one of her online friends in Ireland that she was never able to meet. I know she would've loved that, too. I was so overwhelmed with beauty everywhere I went. I appreciated everything, and being alone a lot of the time was such a soul-searching and amazing experience.
On the 5 year anniversary of her death, I walked to St. Paul's Cathedral. I walked up the 900 stairs to the very top of the Cathedral dome and stared at all of London. I watched the Thames. I admired the Millennium Bridge and the Tate Modern. I soaked in the moment and captured every detail. When I finally went back downstairs, I went into the gift shop and they had the Desiderata and the 23rd Pslam on little wallet-sized notecards. I had done really well all day, but I almost lost it right then and there. I bought two of each and a card. I sat right smack down in the middle of the Cathedral, directly under it's magnificent dome, put in my earphones and set my iPod to play "Into the Mystic" by Van Morrison as I wrote my sister a note on the notecard, and included the Desiderata for her.
As I was leaving, I remember that I wanted to stop and light a candle for her and say a prayer. The prayer area was closing, but the attendant let me in anyway. I sat silently for a few moments, lit my candle, wiped away a few silent tears and left. As I was standing outside, admiring the Cathedral a few minutes later, an older man came up to me and said something very profound and comforting. I don't remember exactly what. He had seen me in the prayer room a few minutes earlier. As I walked away, I was filled with such remorse for not telling him what the day was. I felt like I should've told somebody. Like it would've matter more. But I didn't. Because I never tell anyone.
I have so many amazing memories, and I know she would've loved to hear about every single one, but this in particular--it is just so, her. Me being there also would not have been possible without her (or without my dad and stepmom, who also helped more than I could ever thank them for!). I wasn't getting paid much at my internship, but I was able to make the summer happen by spending a good chunk of my inheritence and I don't regret it one bit, not even for a second, and she wouldn't either.