Friday, July 11, 2008

Dear friend with whom I haven't spoken since 1993

Think back on the last 15 years of your life. What would you tell someone that you hadn’t seen or talked to for 15 years? How would you sum up your life? You get 10 bullet points. A list of 10 things to summarize about you. At the end of your list, tag 5 more people and send on the love…

Dear friend with whom I haven't spoken since 1993,

I see you met my friend Jody, The Hunter's Wife. It was really nice of her to send you over this direction so we could catch up after all these years. Since you don't have a lot of time, I'll try to be quick.

People tell me that I still pretty much look the same. I try not to point out the differences. I'm 15 years older. There *are* differences.

I was a reporter last time we spoke. Remember that little chain of semi-weekly papers in the far west suburbs of Chicago? Well, I left reporting after having to cover several murders right in a row. That's really stressful, having to knock on the door of a murder victim's relatives and convince them that they want to tell me more about their loved one. I tried copy editing for a few years, but eventually left newspapers all-together. I get paid much more now, but it's hard *not* to find a job that pays better than the $17,500 a year I was making back then.

Remember that guy I was engaged to? Dave? We'd known each other for 10 years already back then. Well, we got married in 1994 and are gearing up to celebrate 14 years this fall.

Children? No. "I'll wait for the next century," I always said. "I want to enjoy being married first." Yeah, well, we're eight years into the new century, but what's the hurry? I said it back then and I still say it now, if the biological clock has broken its springs and no longer ticks when and if we ever decide to have kids, then I'm open to adoption.

We have eight nieces and nephews now. All our siblings and Cousin Bob have had kids. I know Cousin Bob's kids aren't technically nieces and nephews, but we consider them as such.

Yeah, my Mom is still in the same house where I grew up. Yeah, I don't live too far away from her. In fact, I live in the same school district where I attended high school. But we did move away for a little while. We lived in San Francisco for a year and a half. LOVED it. We only came back because of the dot-com crash. Too many people we knew couldn't find jobs. It was scary, so we took an opportunity to be transferred back.

Not to bring you down, but my Dad died a few years ago. It was rather sudden and he was too young. But time heals and we move on. That seems to be the theory, anyway.

Loki and the Red DogOh, remember that Australian Shepherd my parents had back then? Red Dog? She got to move to San Francisco and back with us. She was a good dog. Played hard even in her very last hours. We have two Bernese Mountain Dogs now. Big snuggly dogs named Loki and Thor. I've enclosed some photos. They're far more laid back than Red was. Loki and Red overlapped a few months. Poor Red was too old for a puppy, though.

Yes, I'm still writing romance novels. No, I'm not published yet. I think last time we'd talked I'd just attended the Romance Writers of America conference in St. Louis. I'm going again this year. It's in San Francisco in three weeks. I can't wait.

I still travel. Did a big trip to Australia just last year. Really want to get back to Europe. I have this fantasy of spending my 40th birthday drinking wine outdoors overlooking a river like the Thames or a vineyard in Italy or France. I have almost a year left to make that happen.

Well that's about it. I went a little long. Sorry and thanks for sticking around.

Oh, I have these friends I think you should meet. I'll tag them really quick for you here so that you can go visit them.

Claire: She has a wicked sense of humor, and likes to doodle and take photos of flowers. She has this roommate named Willy and a houseguest named Olga. Here's a secret: Willy is an inflatable non-sex toy and Olga is a travelling bra. But that's not really much of a secret.

Lisa365 aka starbursidereus: She's on this mission to try something new every day this year. She's a really good photographer and is a BIG hockey fan, but she lives in Canada and aren't all Canadians born to be hockey fans? Maybe that's just a stereotype. Ask her when you see her.

DonMFH: I think Don started at the newspaper after the last time we talked, so you probably didn't get a chance to meet him then. He lives near Boston now in some dilapidated, crime-ridden neighborhood and is very liberal. More liberal than me, even. He's really into music and photography.

Kelly aka Aerten: She used to live in the Chicago area, too, but I didn't know her back then. She's in New York now, doing all sorts of cool artwork. I have one of her pieces in my office. Some day she and I are going to do a Buffy marathon together. Maybe. If we ever actually meet.

Fragileheart: She's a world traveler. She lives in Canada now, but threatens to move to Dublin soon. I'm not exactly sure all the places she's lived, but she seems to like to move a lot. When you talk to her, ask her about her trip to New York and the John Mayer concert.

Cromely: He travels a lot too, but for business. He brings this cute little stuffed penguin with him on his travels and takes photos of him in front of landmarks. He's from Seattle and likes coffee. I know, another stereotype, but it's true! I hope you like William Shatner, because Cromely likes to hold these events called Shatnerpaloozas.

I really want to introduce you to more of my friends, but I think I'm out of space and I know you're pressed for time. Don't worry, though, you'll meet those other friends soon anyway.

Happy travels,
Haley

13 comments:

  1. Um. You know I don't play by the rules, right? :) Well, if I can get my head around this one, I'll do in on Blah Blah Blah, not the art site.

    Sum up my life for the past 15 years? Huh.

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  2. I don't have any anecdotes to add, but I really, really enjoyed reading this post! In fact, I'm stumbling it and if you joined the digg bandwagon Graham Langdon started a few weeks ago I'll digg it too! Thanks for the link love, I'm honored to be mentioned in such a wonderfully written post!

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  3. Thanks so much for participating. I enjoyed reading yours. Mine was quick and to the point and I always have to had humor. One day I will write something really serious.

    Have a great weekend!

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  4. I DO NOT live near Boston in some dilapidated, crime-ridden neighborhood, thank you very much. I live near PROVIDENCE in a dilapidated, crime-ridden neighborhood ... ;-)

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  5. I loved reading this and getting to know you better.
    Definitely agree with the kid theory, I would adopt if the clock runs out, maybe even if it didn't.
    Sorry about the dad :( I hope he has a shiny gold toilet seat wherever he is :)

    If you go to Italy:

    Claire's Italy trip

    It was excellent although I only stayed a few days,
    I stayed here!.

    Let me know where your going for your 40th and if its doable I will meet up with you for a pint :)

    I am meeting up with Kelly in September woot!

    Although I hate all things tag, I might do this one :)

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  6. I ABOLUTELY love how you did this. LOVE IT!!!

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  7. This is a great way to tackle this meme - it really makes you stop and think when you look back 15 years!

    We always kept putting off having kids, then Lil Sugar happened last year - it's great, we'd been married 8 years, I guess the timing was right :) We had considered adopting though - if we got ready to have kids after the biological clock broke.

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  8. Thanks everyone. I really had fun with this one.

    @Kelly -- Play by the rules? You? In fact, if you do this meme and you *do* follow the rules, I'm going to take your artistic license away. :P

    @Fragileheart -- Thanks for both the compliment and the Stumble! I'm on Stumbleupon, but I forget to use it a lot of the time. I read Graham's post on Digg, and it's on my to-do list, just haven't found time to implement it yet.

    @TheHuntersWife -- You do humor so well. Follow your voice. Thanks for tagging me. :)

    @DonMFH -- My Bad. At least I got part of the description right. :)

    @Claire -- No pressure on the tag. Really. Only do it if it speaks to you (and if it *really* does speak to you, get to a doctor). Thanks for the Italy tips. I'll have to check your links again when and if I ever get to take this trip. As for getting to the UK, we have really good friends in London whom we haven't visited for 5 years, so I'm thinking we're due and a trip there isn't far-fetched. A pint would definitely be fun. Do they serve wine in pint glasses there? :)

    @Monique -- Thanks! For some reason I keep writing long lately. Next meme, I'm going to challenge myself to keep it short.

    @Blessed -- I had fun remembering where I was 15 years ago and what was going on in my life. It was an interesting exercise.

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  9. If you come to London, I would definitely come down to visit! I have friends there too, who always want me venture down south :)

    You don't drink beer at all? I am sure I could get you wine in a pint glass :)

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  10. @Claire -- Well that definitely sounds like a plan. Gotta make it happen. As for beer, I wish I liked it, because it would make life so much easier in some situations. But I've tried,and wine really is my drink. A full pint glass, though, and the good stories will start to come out. Or maybe slur out.

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  11. Great post. And thanks for the neat comments. The Penguin appreciates them, too.

    I'll have to a shot at this next week.

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  12. Get planning :)

    woot!

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  13. @Cromely -- Thanks. And I'm really fond of the penguin. He gets to go all sorts of fun places.

    @Claire -- What's your itinierary again?

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