thank you for lunch today. It was so great seeing you, catching up and bullshitting a bit.
We only live 65 miles apart today, but it feels like you live right next door, just like in 1968 when we met. I was too shy to talk to you kids, having just moved into the neighborhood. So I drove around on my bike, passing you constantly, silently hoping that one of you would ask me if I wanted to join your game. But in the end you all just stared at me and didn't say a word. Maybe because I was a foreigner and you thought I did not speak your language. But I did, at least a little. I gathered all my courage and asked you, 'will you ride your bike with me?'. And so a life-long friendship began. I don't know if you taught me to speak your language better, or if I taught you how to speak it broken. We were inseparable for years. All summer long we spent the days playing outside and the evenings on the rooftops.
We did bullshit then and we would do it now too, if we were not approaching 60. But, I can still laugh so hard with you that I pee my pants. Well, at this age ....
Memories, I have so many. And it seems so far away. It was far away, not in the US, not in Germany where I was born.
I sit at home in San Diego today, I write in English, a language, we both did not speak then, but do now. We are both fluent, in a way.
Anyway, it was so good to hug you today, my friend.
My daughter wishes she could say the same. Her friend lost her battle to cancer last night.
"Was man tief in seinem Herzen besitzt,
kann man nicht durch den Tod verlieren."
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe