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Friday, July 31, 2009

Old Friends

Last week, I ran into a very, very special friend. Someone I haven't seen in over 50 years. The last time I saw her we were young children. She was one of my first childhood friends. We were neighbors and playmate pals. Our childhood homes were back to back. She lived in the house right behind us. There was a grassy, trampled foot path between our 2 houses, downtrodden by the two of us traipsing back and forth umpteen times a day. I was about seven years old and she was six. She was petite, thin and wiry with short, snowy-whitish blonde hair. I was taller with dark brown curls. She was a spitfire. I was adventurous. Together the two of us thought we owned the block. We did everything together. We especially loved playing in the huge field behind our houses in the warm summer months. We galloped imaginary ponies through the tall goldenrod weeds pretending we were cowgirls, stopping to munch on wild strawberries and raspberries. We used the big log playhouse on her property as our cowboy fort. That's where we'd hide out from our parents and plan our next raid on the farmer's corn field across the road. Although we lived in a sizeable midwest city, our newly built post war neighborhood sprung up next to farmland. The kindly farmer often let my best friend and me romp around in the big pile of hay he stacked inside his barn. Afterward, he'd let us pet the cows and chase the roosters.

My family lived in our little white frame bungalow for about 5 years. Then we moved out of state and I never saw my friend again. Since then, I've married, had children and have lived all over the country. Three years ago, my husband and I came full circle and moved back to my original hometown where my friend and I first became best pals. Last week, through a series of fateful circumstances I unexpectedly came face to face with her again. It was at an estate sale at her deceased mother's old home---the very house where we first formed a friendship so many years ago. To my surprise, she remembered me and of course I remembered her. The very first thing she said to me upon being reintroduced after 50 years, was: "I heard you'd become a nun!" Obviously not. We laughed and then she looked me straight in the eye and said: We've got a bond, you know. We've got a special bond." And indeed we do, my friend. Indeed we do. Sphere: Related Content


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