By Andi Bocsardi, Photographer: Hillary Head
Windows down and a slight haze from the outside seeps into the car. Natural Child’s “Ain’t Gonna Stop” echoes in the background while barreling down HWY 377. Chima’s voice from the backseat says ‘I think we are here’, and we all step out. Attached to a chain-link fence a sign reads: NO TRESPASSING; VIOLATORS WILL BE PROSECUTED. This is the third notice we’ve seen so far.
Austere Magazine (Andi Bocsardi): So how did y’all meet?
Chimaroke Onyebuchi: We met through a mutual friend that soon became one of our best friends and we met at a bar that quickly became our favorite bar… Kinda like the bar on that old show Cheers.
Dylan Alfonzzo: We met at the same bar. Found we both of liked whiskey and women, started a convo and realized we had a lot more in common… The rest is history.
AM: Are you guys best friends?
C: No man, we are like brothers. He is literally like my little brother!
D: I call him my best friend. I’ve never been closer to another guy as I am with him. I trust him with my life. He’s an awesome dude.
It’s Easter Sunday at 4:00pm. There is a slight grin on everyone’s face upon realizing the only option is through a hole along the side. I sparked a cig and glanced around to make sure there weren’t any unwanted tag-alongs that followed us in. Familiar anecdotes arise; the classic ‘remember when…’ reflections, and the infamous evenings of inebriation, which start out like: ‘so we were all pretty buzzed by this point and…’
AM: What’s one of the favorite memories together?
D: A couple years ago at jazz fest we got a handle of Admiral Nelson, Chimas favorite liquor, went barefoot like lil hippies and jammed out, got drunk and had no regrets. It was an good night.
I always have fun with this dude even if we just sit around and just talk. He actually gets me, as some people just think I’m weird.
C: As far as favorite memories there was a super chill sunny day that we just sat in lawn chairs in my front yard smoking my corncob pipe tossing peace signs at everyone that drove by! We spent a solid hour just throwing acorns into a bucket across the street like a couple of kids.
Hilary follows the two further down to get some more shots in. Directly ahead lies the quarry. With each step our feet sink into the spongy clay as if walking on dough. To the left a vibrant blue lagoon rests undisturbed. It’s that picturesque moment that words seemingly cannot explain – and the appreciation of that experience with those around. The sorta scene that makes you put away the phone and realize the little nuances – ya know, nature, landscape, wildlife, foliage, people, and life.
CLUNK! The guys started throwing rocks at a barrel in the quarries water.
AM: How did you know that this will be a good friendship?
C: To be honest we had no idea it would turn into such a rad friendship, but it did!
D: In the beginning I never expected us to be such good friends. But in the end I couldn’t ask for a more caring down to earth brother. He makes me proud watching him follow his dreams. I actually get scared to think about not having him in my life as if he were to move away to Dallas or Austin for work. Ughh… BROMANCE STRUGGLES !! haha
AM: Both of you enjoy fashion. Do you feed of off each others vibe when it comes to style?
C: We both adore fashion and at one point and still sometimes, we’ll call each other before we go out to see what each other is wearing.
D: I’ve always been a fan of fashion, but ever since I met Chima he has sparked a new way I look at fashion and clothes. I ask him if something looks good or not. I take his word on everything… He’s my fashion guru.
We begin the trek back to the car. All of us with a sense of connection to someone or something, and the appreciation of a common experience outside city-limits. And maybe it’s just connecting the logical dots that makes intuition a valuable part in the acknowledgement of every sisterhood, brotherhood, siblinghood, friendship, classmate, relationship, kinship; and the desperate illusion that somebody, or some force is there connecting us to each other.
AM: Ok.. so one last question. Do you guys say I love you to each other?
C: And of course we say I love you! We’re best friends!
D: Do I say I love u to him? OF COURSE I DO! I’m not ashamed to let him know he’s a huge part of me. Brothers for life!
There was only one road back to civilization, HWY 377. Just a flat out high-speed burn to Denton, and then straight on to frantic oblivion.