Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Coming Together!

In my last posts, I told you about going down to Karthaus on Sunday to be able to have a little bit of a visit with one of my closest friends from high school -Cheryl. She lives in Florida and along with her brother, Don, (also a Florida resident) and their younger sister, Barbara, who lives in Idaho, were to be here for almost a week as they tended to the difficult task of going through their childhood home, their Mom's furniture and other belongings and then, determining if they would try to sell many of their Mom's possessions or donate them to some great charitable organizations in the area.

That's one job I'd really hate to have to do -to rip apart my family home, where I grew up, ya know. Their Mom is still living -thankfully -and doing quite well at the age of 93, living in Idaho now with the younger of her daughters. But in the past year, it was decided that it was too much of a strain on their Mom to come back to Pennsylvania every spring, stay through the early fall months in the family homestead, alone -and at her age. So in December, they had put the house up for sale, figuring that with the economy in general being so punk and the economy in this area in particular not exactly a blossoming thing, that it would no doubt take a long time to sell the house.

Surprisingly enough though, the house sold within two weeks after they listed it! A really remarkable event for this area, for sure. And this week was the only time that the three siblings could all get back here to Pennsylvania to take care of the furniture and the rest of their Mom's belongings still in the house.

I was really happy that on Sunday when we went over to Karthaus for our brief visit that my older daughter, Carrie, and my grandson Alex, were here to go with me as Carrie is the only one of my children who really ever knew Cheryl, her husband, Mitch, and two of their three children. Carrie was happy too that she had the chance to see Cheryl again as the last time she saw her was when Alex was just a very tiny baby -a little over 13 years ago!

But that visit Sunday was way too brief and Cheryl very much wanted to have a chance for us to connect a little further so she arranged for her cousin, Sharon -also a very close friend of mine from our high school days too -to meet us at The Tavern Restaurant in State College. Her sister, Barbara, also joined us and we had a really great meal along with a lot of fun talking over things from the past, current things in our lives and even a bit about what the future holds (maybe) for us.

Like a lot of my other blogger friends like to do, I had given thought that I would take photographs initially of the great food each of us ordered along with some snapshots, for posterity, of Cheryl, Sharon and Barbara. Yeah, it was a nice thought but not one that came to mind for me until well after we'd eaten and were beginning to wind down, talking about going back to our respective homes or motel room, in the case of Cheryl and Barb! I'm getting to be quite the master of having "senior moments" especially where my camera is concerned, aren't I?

However, I did remember I had brought my camera along in time to at least get these three pictures of my three supper companions and I'd like to at least share those pictures with you.

This is my good friend, Sharon -who lives in State College, has e-mail and yet, we rarely see each other it seems. The last time I saw Sharon was two years ago this month when she and her sister, Connie, made it up this way for one of our monthly lunch bunch meetings and which was also the last time -before Sunday -that I'd seen Cheryl then too! When I mentioned to my daughter Mandy that it had been two years since I'd last seen Sharon, she laughed and teased me that she has seen Sharon on a goodly number of occasions in that two year period as she has often run into her when she's been over in State College shopping!

This lovely lady -the baby of our group tonight -is Cheryl's sister, Barbara. Talk about not seeing someone in a long, long time -I figured out after I got home tonight that before seeing Barbara on Sunday at their Mom's home, the last time before then that I'd seen her was probably in mid-August of 1963, when Cheryl and Mitch got married! I used to remember Cheryl's anniversary date easy as pie but now, I'm not quite sure of the date! I know it was in August of 1963 and I think it was August 14th, but I won't swear to that as being the correct date. Barb looks so much like their Mom though it's downright eerie!

And this, last but definitely not least, is my very dear friend, Cheryl! Doesn't she look fantastic though? I tease her as well as one of our other classmates -Rose, who usually attends our monthly lunch functions -that it just isn't fair to the rest of us for them to each look so darned great after raising a family, now being Grandma's too and all that stuff.

Cheryl and I have something else in common too though. Something I wouldn't really recommend others try to vie for this record though as we have both joined the ranks of being cancer survivors -not just once, but twice. for each of us. What I find a bit strange though is that Cheryl was diagnosed in 1990 or 1991 with endometrial cancer and then 3 years ago, with colo-rectal cancer whereas I was diagnosed in 2003 with colo-rectal cancer and last August with endometrial-uterine cancer! We each had virtually the same diagnoses but in opposite order.

We -Cheryl and I -share a lot of other things too though -one being our political/social beliefs as we both believe in the same political party and theories as well as having like-minds about many of our social policies in this country too. That aspect is something that anytime we have a chance to get together and talk always makes me feel quite comfortable as I don't have to explain my logic in my beliefs to her. She knows exactly where I'm coming from and why I feel and believe the way I do because we are virtually of one mind in that respect.

What's really sad though is that as close as Cheryl, Sharon and I have tried to stay over the years, even with all the technology and stuff there is available today too, we sure don't stay in what could ever be termed constant contact though! It really is downright pathetic for me to admit that I only live about 40 miles from Sharon and yet, it had been two years since the last time I'd seen her.

With Cheryl, of course, there is a bigger, possibly better, excuse why we haven't been able to get together in person and that is because with her living in Florida and me in Pennsylvania, well her trips back home aren't all that frequent and for me, well I'm still waiting to figure out a way to manage a trip to Florida sometime before my time on earth ends!

There is a good possibility that we might actually manage to see each other again sometime this year though as they are planning a trip up I think in June for a college class reunion for her husband, Mitch, as well as maybe a couple trips up in the fall to watch Penn State's Nittany Lions during football season.

I'm looking forward to those times already and hope we can figure out a time that is mutually agreeable for all of us to get together once again.

I'm always up for another visit such as this one tonight was -just so nice to be able to reconnect with some very good old friends, ya know!

Remembering things from those good old days always makes me feel a good bit younger then than what my actual age says I am!

Nothing wrong with that at all, is there?


pomsand said...

Hi Jeni!
I too have just reconnected with my best friend from high school, its been 25+ years since I have seen her or even talked to her. She lives in Alaska, which is were I got to be friends with her since the sixth grade we went all through high school together. Its funny we have adult children and now grandchildren, but when we do talk on the phone it seems that no time has gone by.

Anonymous said...

I think it's wonderful you still have the opportunity to meet up with old friends. My trips back to PA are so hurried, I always miss out on catching up with someone! (Julie Bishop)

Marguerite said...

Sounds like you had a lovely time! Old friends are the best! I see two on a regular basis, but should make more of an effort to see a few others.

TechnoBabe said...

This time with your dear friends sounds like a very good thing for all of you. My close friends are many miles from me, one in North Carolina and one in California with me here in Nebraska. But we stay in touch via email and occasional phone calls.

Sandee said...

How wonderful to spend time with great friends. Lifetime friends at that.

Have a terrific day. :)

terri said...

Isn't it great to get together with long-time friends? So glad to hear you enjoyed your visit!

Tim Keen said...

It really is good to meet up with old friends.