With a champagne clouded mind I'm still able to persuade myself I can count the number of stairs we climb to your apartment (one, two, three, three, five) before you raise your voice over the outside chatter permeating into the lobby to tell me you're going to lift me and take me the rest of the way on your back. An act to prove strength or kindness, I assume, either way I'm too drunk to offer a retort better than a nod of my head that could be mistaken as a nervous twitch. I'm laughing through the throbbing of my feet wedged into these new boots I decided against my better judgement to break in, so you take it as it's understood, and between an almost-but-not-quite successful hoist upward with your arm wrapped around the backs of my knees, we somehow lose our footing and tumble down those stairs together without a semblance of grace (five, three, three, two one) and begin our new year with bruises, tangled limbs, fluffy eggs and pain relievers. Later in the month you, and I reunite, you with your selfless California heart, and you meet my parents and my sisters after agreeing to travel all that way with me without even weighing your options. I can't thank you enough for being there with me, for being the friend I've always needed but sometimes didn't deserve. As if I'd want anyone else to support and fearfully watch me tip toe my way across a slippery floor in Maticevski (a two piece my brother later described as sports bra couture) between the slits of your fingers against your eyes to receive something that was surely not meant for me. "Shut up, it has your name on it, Rosie." "That doesn't look like Rose, does it? Are you sure?" She tells me to shut up again and again and again.

Los Angeles makes me feel tired and easily irritated, it always has. I never followed up on a reason to invest in my own place here; I've a series of roofs I've lived under if we speed through the decades, none of them ever feeling quite right. I stay with George whenever I come, but this time it's different and we stay at your place because it does feel quite right. George and I have lunch regularly, he'll ask about the film, Susan, if her dog, Penny, writes her own tweets, you, if I want to Skype mum in Coffee Bean, if there's anything new, and so on. You and I jet to Vegas a few weeks after your birthday and I'm surrounded by all of these gorgeous men I spent the previous spring with in Budapest, laughing, drinking, dancing, engaging in spontaneity. As I'm being ushered from a stage the night before we leave, I'm handed a champagne flute and I can feel my stomach dancing, emotions running rampant over this small gesture. I grip the glass with my fingers and stand there, a true deer in headlights as I look for you, the only light I seek. I can't see behind the flashes but I stand in place for photos. Later in the night when I'm asked by Paul why I haven't touched the liquid, I look at him and say, "I've just started a cleanse." When in reality I wanted to say, "The best is yet to come."

You were one of the first people I told on set before it became common knowledge and everyone was asking me if I needed fresh pillows, towels or a foot rest (okay, this didn't happen frequently, but let it be known X-Men are the superior species for a myriad of reasons other than their hospitality). We would sit and eat together, sometimes alone, sometimes with him or him or her, and you would talk and talk, sometimes I wouldn't even get a word in, but I didn't care, I'd love to listen to how excited you'd get over the nerdiest things. You probably thought I was such a bore, though you'd swear the opposite. You're one of the best people to come into my life this year. I'm grateful you opened my eyes to so much beauty and kindness. Montreal falls into place effortlessly, bringing us back to where we left of, greeting us with new faces and adventures. We become a community, a family, a team, and even though you all went to Comic Con without me while I desperately tried to hide the signs of a growing stomach, you've all earned permanent edges of my heart that can't be chipped. Thank you for that. And thank you Montreal, for bringing Taylor Swift to the Bell Centre. You won't remember this, but it was your first concert. I think you enjoyed it.

If I shut my eyes for more than three seconds, rubbing away the exhaustion and excitement that's washed over me, I'm afraid I'll miss the second half of the year. It's only August and it feels like the year is quickly enveloping us in as a forewarning that it's near, ready or not. Closing up one chapter and rushing off to the next is part of the business, it cannot be escaped and it doesn't get any easier if you let yourself sit with it. Quick goodbyes, see you laters, we'll keep in touch (I mean it this time). The leaves are starting to change and the weather is providing this perfect chill or at least that's how I imagine it to be in New York, as I've spent less time there than I would have liked over the past few months, brief visits, plane after plane. I hear from mates that it's still warm in the city, wiping away any autumnal dreams I have, still feels like June and everyone is wearing thongs and short sleeves rather than scarves and boots. We prepare to make the journey to Georgia, the three of us (four, it's four), regaining as much normalcy as we can in a rental home that's bigger than both of the apartments we still live in separately back home, but not without time spent in the sand and sun with a deflated inflatable cow that makes us shake our heads as we share the same knowing look.

step. vampire weekend

we've only just begun. the carpteners

where did our love go. the supremes

she's gone. hall and oates

true. spandeau ballet

head over heels. tears for fears

magic. the cars

me, myself and i. de la soul

rock lobster. the b52's

bad. wale ft. rihanna

ms. fat booty. mos def

freak. estelle

independent women pt. 1. destiny's child