Wednesday, May 4: What better way to reconnect with friends in the U.S. than to meet my oldest and dearest friends from York High School? On Wednesday, I drive the familiar route to my hometown of Yorktown and meet my crazy and fun-loving friend Rosie at her time share in Williamsburg. After hanging out and chatting for a bit, we go to City Center Grill and eat dinner with Rosie’s sister Janet, Charlene and Martha.
I have known these girls since I was in 5th grade and it never matters how much time has passed, being in their company is like wearing a comfortable pair of p.j.s. They fit and it doesn’t matter how much you have changed, they stretch to mold to your changed form. We can be apart for 1 year or 5 years; it never seems to make any difference. We change, we evolve, yet we are the same. We will always share our common history of growing up in Yorktown during the late 60s and early 70s. Nothing can ever take that away from us.
We can always count on Charlene to catch us up with the local happenings, since she’s plugged in and still living in York County. She shares with us her grief over losing her sister-in-law Wanda to cancer. Rosie will be moving to Texas soon and just bought a new house that she and her husband are renovating. Martha’s mother moved in with Martha in Florida. Martha’s physical ties to Yorktown are now severed as part of her reason for being in Yorktown was to sell her mom’s house. It’s strange how things may change for all of us, yet we will always love and care for each other.
In the evening, Janet, Rosie and I go back to the condo and drink wine while we watch one of my favorite Italian movies, Bread and Tulips. I’m pleased that Rosie and Janet love it as much as I do… 🙂
Thursday, May 5: Rosie, Janet and I spend the day running around to get food, drinks and party supplies for their brother Daniel’s surprise 50th birthday party tonight. In the evening, Martha joins us and we go to Daniel’s, where we lie in wait for the birthday boy’s arrival. We have fun times but realize we don’t really know that many people outside of ourselves. Fun times nonetheless.
Friday, May 6: Rosie, Janet and I go shopping all day and later in the evening, Martha wants to say a fond farewell to her mother’s house, so she orders a bunch of Panera sandwiches and salad and wine and we all eat dinner before heading to the YHS Spring mixer.
At the Spring Mixer we run into people from all graduating classes, so it’s more fun than a class reunion. I see my first true love, Smitty, whose father died while I was in Korea. He thanks me for the condolences I wrote on the Daily Press obituary and he tells me all about his father’s passing. I see Bubba, Rosie’s old boyfriend and Charlene’s first husband. And I see my old crazy friend Randy, who says to me, “Who would have known that you would be the one to live and travel overseas like you’ve been doing?” He was sweet and encouraging and as fun as ever… 🙂 I see Lisa, who we once called “Smack,” who hasn’t really changed at all. In a strange twist, her daughter Bess has married Charlene’s son Chad. So now Lisa and Charlene are tied forever together. And I see Kathy H. who is tinier and cuter than ever. And then we all drink beer from kegs, just like in the good old days, and dance away to rock tunes from the 70s, brought to us by Charlene’s husband Richard’s band. Fun times.
It’s so strange that going to event like this, where everyone is older, balder, fatter, and more silver-haired, we can revert back to our 1974 teenage selves and momentarily forget all that has passed in the interim.
Saturday, May 7: Janet, Rosie and I drink coffee and lounge around in our pajamas watching a French movie I brought, Apres Vous. We soak in the hot tub. We lie out by the pool. In the evening, we make dinner in and watch another movie, Sliding Doors. In the good old days, we would have certainly gone out on the town, but everything in Yorktown has changed and we no longer know what “out on the town” would be. Plus, we’re just too lazy to make the effort.
As always, I feel totally comfortable with all my old friends. There is something amazing that can keep a bond between people even after much time and distance. Love, history and crazy shared experiences are an ingrained part of our hearts and will keep us tied to each other no matter where we go or who we ultimately become.