Thursday, May 9, 2013

A wonderful day

It's a wonderful day today... we've finally got Spring here, and my tulips are going gangbusters! But the wonderful day of this moodling had very little to do with the weather or the flowers, and everything to do with friendship.

Those who have been reading here for a while know that 25 years ago, I spent a year travelling with Up With People, an international, educational and cultural program for young adults. We staged a lively musical show (about peace, love and friendship), participated in many different service projects and organizations (I remember volunteering with the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, helping with Meals on Wheels for Seniors, reading stories at a Daycare, visiting several inner city schools, etc.) and we learned a lot about the world. 150 of us from 12 (or was it 14?) different countries traveled the U.S., Canada, Belgium, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, and the Netherlands (with a few side trips into other countries), staying with host families and experiencing life in their homes. It was a fantastic year. I had a marvelous time and made lots of friends, only a few with whom I've managed to stay in touch...

Until Facebook brought a lot of us together again... and out of the blue on Saturday, I received a Facebook message from one of the castmates that I honestly never imagined I'd ever see again, saying that he'd be landing in Edmonton on Sunday night, and was I free on Monday? Todd is a flight attendant with United Airlines, which just recently added Edmonton to its itineraries, and he had never been to Edmonton before. All I had planned for Monday was my usual work from home and walk the dog routine, so I told Todd I was excited about the opportunity to see him, and we planned to be in touch once he arrived. I'm lucky to work part-time, so postponing Monday's work wasn't a big issue.

Todd was one of the castmates that I liked but didn't know very well during our UWP year, and spending Monday with him made me feel a bit like I had missed out all those years ago. He caught a bus from his hotel to my place, and we spent six wonderful hours going for walks along the river valley, having a simple lunch, talking, singing, reminiscing and catching up on each others' lives over the last 25 years. It was almost like no time had passed since we said goodbye on July 5, 1988... except that we're both older and wiser, and we both have wonderful daughters -- and a lot more life experience! It was soooo goood to see him!

The bonus is that he'll be here for another two Mondays, so I get to be 'host friend' again... and to revel in a past friendship that has moved into the present. I can't help but smile when I think of it. Edmonton's push to have a direct flight to New York has paid me big dividends in a friendship that I barely knew the first time around! An unexpected but much appreciated gift, to be sure!

1 comment:

  1. Oh your afternoon of friendship sounds so fun. I'm glad you got reconnect and rekindle your friendship.


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