April Friend Day


Hey blog world! Today as you all know is a special day. April Fools Day! However, today is special to me for a different reason. Instead of celebrating a fool I celebrate a friend (but then again he is quite silly so I guess I’m celebrating both today!) Four years ago today I met one of my best friends! Peter Halley Peter Halley!

4 years ago today I was 12 years old and my parents took me to see Spirit of Newfoundland’s “ABBA: Gotta Get The Scoop” dinner theater show. It was my third time at a Spirit performance. I loved Spirit (as I of course still do) and couldn’t wait for the show to start! When it did it was mesmerizing! Flashing lights and live music. I was astounded! Even more so when the actors (Darrin Martin, Peter Halley, Shelley Neville and Sabrina Roberts) came out! They were really funny and their singing was impeccable!

At one point in the show the actors each came out to sing their favourite ABBA song. When Peter came on stage he said his favourite was from the perspective of two men but yet it was sung by the girls. He asked the audience what it was (click here to reveal.) I wanted to take a guess but since I was still new to dinner theater and it had been 4 years since I last saw one (“Viva Lost Elvis” in 2007) I didn’t know how to proceed. Do I blurt out my guess? Do I raise my hand? I chose the latter assuming it was the right thing to do. Peter saw my hand in the air and was taken aback. He said he felt like he was back in his classroom (he’s a former teacher.) He called on me to answer and I said “S.O.S”. I was incorrect but at least I tried!

Near the end of the show Peter asked the audience if they had a favourite ABBA song that wasn’t yet sung. I was hoping to hear “Dancing Queen” and they hadn’t sung it yet so I put up my hand to say so. When Peter saw my hand raised he told the women he was talking to that their answers were void now because they didn’t raise their hands LOL!

After the show I got to meet Peter! I was thrilled that he recognised me (when I came up to him he asked if I was the girl in the back who was raising her hand!) we introduced ourselves to each other and we chatted about the show. Peter was very nice. I liked him and I could tell he liked me. Here’s a picture of me with the cast that night ABBA show!

Two years later we saw each other again at Spirit’s “Go Duet Yourself” show. I saw on Facebook that it was Peter’s Birthday the month before so I made him a belated Birthday card. I flagged him over to my table and when I told him that I was the girl at ABBA who raised her hand, he remembered me! I was very happy that he did. I gave him the card and I’ll never forget the look on his face. His jaw dropped and his eyes were wide! He looked at the card, then at me, then back at the card. After he read it he said that I made his night! Just by hearing that he made mine! Then was the best part, he gave me a hug!

After the shows the cast gives shout outs to friends and family in the audience. During that segment Peter showed off my card! I was floating on cloud 109! I worked hard on that card so it meant a lot to me that he loved it that much and showed it to the audience. After the show when I got a picture with the cast Peter said “I want to stand next to Leah!” That made me feel special! I could tell that this was the start of a friendship. I was right and what a wonderful friendship it is!

I’ve learned a lot from him. Even something I didn’t want to learn LOL! He grossed me out last Canada day when he told me what hotdogs were made of! EW! Also Peter is my voice teacher now and a lot of people have said that my singing has improved! He’s very picky but that’s what makes him great! It really helps. Peter is also teaching me about puns and idioms. Because of my Aspergers I find them hard to understand. I really appreciate that he takes time out of his busy schedule to teach me these things. I’m teaching him too! Little by little I’m helping him learn about Aspergers Syndrome (the form of Autism I have.)

I enjoy chatting with Peter. He’s very interesting. He often has a funny or interesting story to tell when I come to his house for a voice lesson. I like telling him about my week and what’s going on in my life too. When I have good news he’s always very happy for me. When I’m going through a tough time I’m glad to have him to talk to. He’s a good listener. I also really appreciate that he prays for me when I ask him too. For example earlier in the year I had some involuntary shaking spells. They were scary! I was even more scared when I had to go to the Janeway for EKG’s. I was afraid of what the results would show (thank goodness they were both fine.) I told Peter about what had been going on and asked him to pray for me and he said yes. That meant a lot to me and knowing I was in his prayers and he was thinking of me helped make me feel a little less scared. I pray for him too. Peter means a lot to me. When I pray before bed I always ask God to bless him and his family and take care of his mom

What I like most about Peter is his kind and gentle demeanor. He’s s a sweetheart! He’s always got a smile on his face and he’s one of the nicest people I know. I don’t think mad, or angry are emotions he possesses! He’s also very patient and understanding of my challenges.

It was fate that brought me to “ABBA: Gotta Get The Scoop”. Peter and I were meant to become friends and change each others lives. Thank you so much Peter for these past four years of friendship! Here’s to many more! I’ll raise a glass (of lemon water) in your honor today!

Leah

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