My Experience Having a Best Friend Who Lives 4,000 Kilometres Away

There’s approximately 4,000 kilometres separating me from my best friend. That’s a five-and-a-half-hour flight, a 36-hour drive, a two-and-a-half-day trip by public transit, or about 34 days of walking. Any of those options would be worth it, but thankfully I almost have enough money for airfare.

Until then, it sucks. I hate it when she sends pictures of her dog and I’m not there to pet him. Or when she’s upset and all I want to do is give her a hug and make her a cup of tea.  

There are definitely some unique challenges that long-distance friends experience. Here are some of the best and worst ones, in my opinion:

Time zones are a bitch.

Maria is three hours behind, which I always forget. I’ll text her in the morning and wonder why she’s not replying since she wakes up earlier than I do – but oh wait, it’s still 4:00 a.m. there.

It’s the same thing in the evening. Staying up until midnight with me isn’t difficult, but staying up until it’s midnight for her is a different story. During the summer, I’d be awake until four in the morning because I didn’t want our conversation to end. Now that it’s the school year, I have to put her on silent at eleven so I can wake up for class the next day.

There’s always a bunch of texts, videos, and memes waiting for me in the morning anyway (which is the perfect way to start my day).

We’re already planning what we’re going to do when we see each other.

I’ve been trying to keep a list, but we’re adding to it every day. So far, we have: watching Grease (her favourite film), having a pizza party, learning the choreography to our favourite kpop songs, going to Ikea together, and having a karaoke session in the car on the way – assuming one of us learns how to drive by then. It’s a work in progress.  

Most importantly, we’ve been planning our matching tattoos. I won’t say what we’re getting, but it has multiple meanings in relation to our friendship and our favourite bands and songs. Music is one of the main things we bonded over, so it holds special value within our relationship. I can’t wait to get it.

America is weird.  

Apparently, there are no Smarties in the States. Well there are Smarties, but they’re what Canadians call Rockets. Chocolate Smarties don’t exist. I learned this after sending “!!!!what!!!!!” and pictures of Smarties boxes to Maria one day.  

There are other differences too. Thankfully, we have the same political views, so she isn’t offended when I say anything about how their country is currently being run. Whenever she’s sick, I try to convince her to come to Canada since our healthcare system is better than theirs. Hopefully it works someday.

I would go to jail for this girl.

When I get a text saying that someone’s annoying her, I’m ready to throw hands. Sadly, I don’t have $500 to spend every time I want to fly there and kick someone’s ass. The most I can do is listen. She always does the same for me.

I would argue that she knows me better than most of my friends here. And because she’s so far away, she can give me an outsider’s perspective on things happening in my life. That combination is so helpful when I’m trying to figure out what the hell I’m doing when it comes to relationships, school, and my career.

She always seems to know when I need her.

There have been so many times where I’ve had a bad day, and before I can process it I just happen to get a message from Maria. Her timing is impeccable.

Last week, I sent her a video but she sent me one at the exact same time. Both of us were confused. She thought I’d sent it to her earlier, and she was just getting it now, but nope. I had to let her know about a YouTube video I had just watched, and she had to send me a video of the digital art drawing she’s currently working on because we were both thinking of each other right at that moment.

Name a more iconic duo – I’ll wait.   

Although the distance between us sucks, I’m insanely grateful to have Maria in my life. I wouldn’t be me without her, so I’ll do whatever I can to keep her around. Even if it means staying up until the crack of dawn or not buying a Glamglow mask, because it means I’m $30 closer to seeing her. Hopefully I’ll have enough money for a plane ticket sometime this year.    

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have five iMessages, one Snapchat notification, and four tweets from Maria to reply to.