GABRIEL SAYS SAYS…
There was a slow inevitability to my friendship with Allegra. In 1964, before she was born, I went on “baby dates” with her brother Danny.
In 2003, I found myself in Taos, New Mexico, a father to newborn twins. Allegra’s infant was eight months older. Two fields away from where my sons ate their first solid food, her house was going up.
In 2013, after three moves, the blind man’s bluff of chance landed me across the field from her in the opposite direction. It was as though happenstance were bracketing like an artillery piece to introduce us. Our 10-year-olds played for the same football team, and I became aware of the London transplant who – like me – had led a nomadic life, and now lived with her family just across the road.
At the very outset of our friendship came another delay: the fireworks of her splintering “marriage” caused me to regretfully take my distance for a time.
When we resumed our acquaintance both as friends and as collaborators, I really had to remind myself that she had not always been there. It was, and remains, as though a close family member reappeared – a touchstone of identity. It seems implausible today that we were not always friends.