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Getting Together with my Good Old Friends – La Gourmandista

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Getting Together with my Good Old Friends

It's been weeks since I wanted to write something like this, since a blogger I follow has been a series entitled #MyFirst, and each week she talks about a specific subject that makes me remember my own firsts.

If you are interested in reading about Life & Other Crises, visit her blog. She is an Australian author I have become fond of reading for some time now. She writes about everything and anything about , whatever sometimes most of us don't have the courage or the imagination to share, and well, since my blog is about me and my life, I identify myself with her.

But let me return to what I wanted to share today. Kerri -the author I was just introducing you to- wrote a couple of weeks ago about her first best friend and promoted readers and bloggers following her to share as well, and though I didn't do it at the moment, it made me think about all those with whom I've shared special moments. I remember my mom saying you could count your friends with one hand and have spare fingers, but my perception is that she decided it'd be better for me to figure it out on my own. And this is the result after more than 30 years of walking through thick and thin but lucky enough to never do it alone.

At the very beginning of my days I used to go to a very little nursery school in my neighborhood where I remember being fond of one of my teachers, a Chilean expat who was living in at the time due to her husband's work at IBM, and a tall girl named Lulu. I've always been a shorty, so she may have been average, but for me she was really tall. To , I still remember where she used to live, and even when I go visit Mexico and pass in front of her gate I find myself wondering if in her soul she finds memories as heart-felt as I do. But then again, I haven't seen her since I started Kindergarten, so, who knows?

Then, as early as age 4, I started going to the school where I finished my high-school studies and I can say I met some people worth holding on to. Several have stayed in my life, others have come and are gone for good, and the best part of it all is that even though some have vanished just as our youth has begun to do so as well, they have found a way to make even greater come backs and we are starting to share adulthood together.

Being a Parisian has approached me to several of them as well, since I have come to visit some who moved to the Old Continent before I did, and it has been awesome to find myself sitting down having coffee or a glass of wine God knows where, and talk about grade school, everything we have done later in life and our plans for the future. Finding amicable faces in new cities is always very comforting, and this adventure has brought me several events of the sort, but without a doubt there have been some that have been even more exciting to the heart, specially because I share with each one of them a little piece of my history.

These encounters include Claudia. She was a gymnast and swimmer when we met. I was a trampoline diver. We stopped seeing each other when we were teenagers. We didn't meet at school, but at the local  sports club where we practiced our beloved disciplines, and since we were never really close, we didn't miss each other. However, the magic of the Internet and these who always find a way to stay close, we re-met through a common friend via Twitter. When in Barcelona, we agreed to meet after we'd realized knowing each other from those sporty afternoons. The cruise ship arrived to the port of Barcelona and we had agreed to meet by the statue of Cristopher Columbus. When our eyes met, we were just able to smile and hug each other. The rest of the day was catching up and walking around downtown Barcelona as if we had made time stop. Her mother remembered me really well, though I was ashamed for not recalling her but until we walked down memory lane. We met again, now in Paris and with her husband. A blast!

Then, there was Madrid. And even though there was too much to see like in most European cities, there were also too many people from Remembrance Boulevard. There was my host, Emilia, who's really not blood-related to me but whom I love dearly like a real niece even before she'd been born. She was there as an exchange and I just had to go visit her. In the middle, I organized the schedule to meet with Eréndira, the shorty one with perfect black curls from grade school. I hadn't seen her since our high-school graduation. She stepped out of the metro escalator and I recognized her immediately. The afternoon was too short. We spent a marvelous time, were caught up by her husband and beautiful baby girl Inés. El Retiro in a sunny afternoon with a pint of beer; the perfect combination to come up to date. I also met with Elisa, another friend from grade school, but Elisa and I hadn't seen each other since we were in our early teens. We knew bits and pieces of each other's lives after we had been schoolmates and started forming the jigsaw puzzle. We met in the morning and then had lunch after having jumped in the Madrid Cable Car. It was a real joy seeing her as well as she is. I stepped out of El Corte Inglés and we immediately recognized each other. Again, the heart beat fast and time stopped just for a little while. But Madrid had more in stock for me, and what a delight. There was Laura, my good friend from back in my days in the consulting world. We've kept in touch all along, and we had already met in Paris when she was visiting the in-laws in town. Nonetheless, it was splendid having met her and spent some time with her as well. Last, but definitely not least, there was Paty. Paty is probably with whom I share the shortest story. I met her through my dear Casey, my soul sister. They used to work together, and she's one of those people with whom one may chat for hours about everything and nothing, from gossip to history and culture, and unfortunately we only had the chance to have gourmet-like lunch before having to run to the airport and jump into the plane. The truth is I loved being in Madrid, but from time to time I wonder if the reason is basically thanks to all these people I got together with while there; they made it all special and different.

And yes, people from here and there have come to Paris, but that's a whole other post.

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