Wednesday, February 29, 2012
40 years ago my mom was pregnant along with her friend Diane. The two baby girls were born 10 days apart. They played in the church nursery together. They took ice skating lessons together. They went to school together. They played the flute together. Play dates, Halloween costumes, slumber parties, graduation day. How many of us are lucky enough to have that friend who knows you forever? They know the entire journey and what makes you who you are.
My friend now lives in Lima, Peru. Over a year ago I had just found out we were moving here to Bogota. We hit a weekend where we were both back home visiting our families. I said to her “I want to spend our 40th birthdays together.” I had no idea how this would ever be possible. The thought lingered in the back of my mind for over a year. I never really pursued it beyond a wish. I didn't look at the calendar, I didn't look at plane ticket prices.
One day my husband called me from work. He had been working on buying tickets for us to go to Buenes Aires for a conference which happened to fall over my birthday. He was a bit frustrated. He was trying to find direct flights home for us. It wasn't working for the dates we had chosen. Off hand I asked “Where's the layover?” “Lima”, he replied. Silence. Hmmmmm. “Can I stay in Lima a few days and visit Cheryl?”
After 10 days in Argentina, I walked through customs and saw my friend waving at me with a big smile on her face. Lima, Peru. Somehow as little girls playing together or giggling teenagers I never dreamed we would be celebrating our 40th birthdays – together, in Peru.
Cheryl and her family gave me a wonderful tour of Lima. We explored churches, wandered markets, tasted foods. But greater than the experience of seeing another city was the time we spent in her home. Cooking, washing dishes, playing in the park with her kids. Sharing, laughing, loving.