Today is the 60th birthday of my best high school buddy. Denise and I met in 1965 at the bus stop one snowing morning shortly after our family moved to Kabul, Afghanistan. Her family arrived one week prior to our family and our homes were about a five minute walk away from one another.
Although she was in my older sister, Maggi's class, Denise and I quickly became friends and shared mutual interests in horse back riding, boys and fun.
Denise was a huge part of my life for many, many years. I loved being with her, talking into the wee hours of the morning, riding bicycles through town and the horses out in the koochi fields, learning how to peel potatoes from her (yes, a sheltered childhood I had!) and in general doing the things girls do. We baby sat together and separately for different families in the community.We listened to music together and I was on retainer to try to get Denise off restrictions when her parents placed her on it. Her dad, Sargeant O., was a difficult task master, but a real softie under it all. Denise was on retainer to get me home on time. We swam a lot at the International Club and spent hours tanning and plotting about how to get the guys to take an interest in us. Denise and I went to the movies together, we explored Kabul and its environs with one another and were always on the look out for a cute guy. And oh there were many of those!
I was the maid of honor at Denise's wedding. She and her husband had two children. Her oldest son is my Godson and her daughter is my 'adopted' Goddaughter. I last saw Denise nine years ago at the AISK school reunion. She was there with her mom, my adopted mom. It was great to be able to hug her and do a quick catch up.
I have not been in contact with Denise for at least seven years now, but I fondly remember our lives in Kabul together, the long days, the longer nights and the joy that one has with a sister who is not a sister but better than a sister.
I pray God's abundant blessings on Denise this day and for years to come. I pray her many grandchildren and joy.
Happy Birthday, 'Neesie'. I love you.