Sunday, October 14, 2012

Old Friends...

Bob & a few of his many friends
We all know that old song by Simon & Garfunkel about two old friends sitting on a park bench like bookends. When we were young it seemed so far away, but as we get older (some of us, anyway) we realize that while it may be a long, long time from May to December the days grow short when you reach September (ahh…I love the version of that song by Willie Nelson).
            The subject of this blog, however, is not aging! Enough of that, already. Rather, it’s about old friends, and I don’t mean they need to be elderly, I just mean they’ve been in your life for a long time. New friends are blessings and I love them. But old friends…well, there’s something to be said for a friend you met on the first day of Kindergarten (yes, one of my best friends and I have been close for more than 50 years).
            I was inspired to write this blog because today I’m attending a surprise birthday party for a friend who is turning 65. This particular fellow has an amazing sense of humor and has always been there for me. When I was diagnosed with breast cancer 8 years ago, he was on my doorstep with comfort, flowers and jokes. This friend and I do not see eye to eye politically at all. And yet, there’s something about human friendship and love that rises above politics. In this season of voting, debating, and watching the polls, I think it’s important to remember that we are all in this together.
            We are all so different, and yet we are all so the same. Bob (my friend) and I do not agree on presidents, taxes, unions, health care, or a lot of other things. But when one of us is sick or sad, we reach out our hands. This is what friendship and humanity should be about, no matter the “ruling party.”
            Happy Birthday to Bob (and to his dear wife, my friend Grace; both have birthdays this month, met in Kindergarten and have been married for 43 years!). And as my dear departed mother (a Democrat married for 50 years to a staunch Republican) would say, “Thanks be to God!” In this case I will add, “Thanks be to the Universe, and the powers that be for giving us differences as well as similarities.” 
Life would be more than a little bit dull if every time I said “Yes!” you said “Yes!” too.  I’m sure Bob would agree.
Grace & Bob

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