Loida and I worked together at the University of the Philippines for 10 years. She became my closest friend and associate at UP-ISSI. I remember my first field work assignment. The two of us traveled together to Nueva Ecija, an unforgettable experience I will probably blog someday.
By association, our hubbies naturally became part of our circle. When we became neighbours at a newly opened subdivision in Quezon City, our lives became more intertwined. Our children took the same school bus to the same Montessori school. They became like a family to us, sharing, helping out, looking after each other's kids.
In 1995, they migrated to New Zealand. Three years later, we migrated to BC.
Oceans apart and leading separate lives, we were not completely out of touch. Though our phone conversations and emails were few and far between, we simply picked up from where we left off.
The topic of visiting each other sometimes came up. They always sounded serious about coming here to visit or work. I wanted to visit New Zealand, but it was more like wishful thinking. O me of little faith...
I was totally and pleasantly surprised when Loida emailed me a few weeks ago that their whole family was coming to Vancouver for a holiday. The details of their trip--the plane flights, vacation days of the whole family from work or school, etc--came together in a way that can only be described as providential. We were thrilled! I immediately filed my own vacation leave.
After 13 years, we saw each other again two Fridays ago. Their kids have grown; I tried to fast forward, or rather age forward the images I had of them in my mind. Loida and Ric, however, looked more youthful than in the olden days when we were back home bearing the heat and dust and traffic and lack of water in the area where we lived. They said we seemed younger too. What great friends we are!
Reunited after 13 years and looking less stressed
They were here for only nine days, three of which were spent in Seattle. For the rest of their visit, we had a great time of catching up and enjoying each other's company, cooking together, seeing places, driving around, chatting, and planning our next get-together.
Searching online for a cruise. Whooppeee!
But we are thinking beyond a mere vacation together. I wish they can just move here, God-willing. Then we can be neighbours again!! Yay!!