Ok, so I figured out how to add pictures–woohoo! I figured I’d better give you something to LOOK at instead of just words.
I can not tell you how excited I am! My friend Michele from Phoenix (on the left) and my friend Christine from Seattle (on the right) are coming to beautiful Pittsburgh to visit in a few weeks. I first started talking to Michele a few years ago solely on a professional basis. She’s in the transportation industry and owns her own company. Over time we became friends, although we still only talked during work hours and had a lot of email communication. Last September, Mike and I had to go to Phoenix for a wedding and I suggested to Michele that she and I get together. Christine, her friend from Seattle, and Michele came to pick me up at my hotel and we spent the afternoon at a crazy luxurious spa. I had never met Christine before, and I had never met Michele in person, but I felt like we had all been friends forever. (Either that or I totally horned in on their friendship and they totally humored me.)
Over Memorial Day, I flew out to Phoenix to meet up with Michele, and the next day we flew up to Seattle to hang out at Christine’s house. I was with a whole bunch of people I didn’t know–Michele’s son, her boyfriend, her friends Amy and Rudy, and Christine’s family and friends. You would think that I’d be kind of apprehensive about spending a weekend with virtual strangers, all of whom had met each other before. But I wasn’t. Not at all. And from the second I walked in the door, I felt like I was part of their big extended family.
I learned a lot about myself and a lot about all of them that weekend. Almost everyone there had fought their way through some really tough times and are now at a place in their life where they never forget where they came from, and never take anything for granted. Compared to what they went through, I’ve had it relatively easy. Their families are closer than I ever was with mine. They truly love each other and care about each other, and accepted me as one of their own–no questions asked.
Christine’s teenage son and Michele’s teenage son, who had grown up together in Seattle before Michele moved to Phoenix, were two of the most conscientious kids I’ve ever been around. They are wiser than their years, respect authority, but still have the fun that teenage boys are destined to have. I only hope that I can someday raise my children to be the kind of people they are.
So Michele will be in town for work for a week in the middle of September, and Christine is flying in over the weekend. It also happens to be the weekend that Mike will be away for a boys-only weekend in Las Vegas. So Michele, Christine and I will be checking out the sights in Pittsburgh during the day and then lounging around in the evening in our PJs while drinking Christine’s signature apple martinis and watching Lifetime. Massages and pedicures may be on the agenda also.