When we moved to Puerto Rico I was faced with a challenge. Living on base, close quarters for anyone who wanted to scrutinize. Think fish bowl. Women my age, with young children were generally wives of junior officers. Women who were married to my husband's peers were older. The younger women felt intimidated. Heavens I might run and tell my husband something they shared (as if he would care). This was part of the deal when I married a man with a past. Oh well.
One day I was out walking near the pool and saw this woman with a little boy. I knew we had a new family joining the Staff and where in housing they were moving. I walked over and introduced myself. The rest is history.
Virginia and I enjoyed one another's company. We walked our dogs at night along the mangroves. We sat pool side or in the sand with our kids. Her son Joshua was aged right between Matt and Krieg. When Erin headed off to school on the bus, we would jump in the car with the 3 boys and drive to San Juan, 2 hours away, for our Taco Bell fix, arriving back on base in time to meet Erin's bus on it's return trip.
After we retired from the Navy, Virginia and family visited us in Wisconsin a few times. We met in Indianapolis for a long holiday weekend. They moved from Virginia to Tennessee to Georgia. We moved from Wisconsin to Idaho. We have always stayed in touch. When her daughter Jena was born we became proud Godparents.
At one point her son told us when we sat with our heads together, giggling and scheming, or headed out on one of our antics, he was reminded of Lucy and Ethel. For whatever reason it stuck.
This year Ethel decided she was going to spend her 50th birthday with us. Our Hawaiian option didn't develop but she took advantage of way cheap tickets to fly to Boise.
Mike took her out to Birds of Prey on Friday while I worked. She got the whole tour.
Saturday morning we got up and took in the Boise Farmer's Market. Believe it or not I've never been. I'm not a big visitor to downtown. I may have to change this...
Saturday night we had a Cuatro de Mayo fiesta - to celebrate both Virginia's 50th birthday as well as Krieg's father-in-law Mike Haxby. We shared dinner with Karissa's folks, Kristen and Mike as well as her grandparents, Donna and Gary.
Our very creative DIL Britnee made both birthday cakes!
Tate and Karissa took advantage of the fire pit to make some smores.
Brit, Matt and Mike
Ethel and Lucy
Karissa, Ethel, Krieg and Stanley
Ethel, Britnee, Matt and a very tired Taten
Sunday afternoon we took advantage of everyone being in town and went to Ste. Chapelle for the wine tasting.
Belly up to the bar folks...
Krieg, Ethel, Matt & Britnee
Britnee, Ethel, Karissa, Deb, Grandma Donna, Kristen and Shelbea
Tate didn't think much of the wine tasting...
This is one landmark I knew she would love to visit!
View from Ste. Chapelle
Monday morning we headed north to meet up with our favorite Moscow-ites for lunch in McCall.
Along the river
Lunch date. Ethel finally got to meet the youngest Grandchild.
Chris, Erin, Calder and Ethel
And since Ethel is a Virginia Tech alumni she wanted to see the infamous Smurf Turf, where the team that beat the Hokies plays... whatever... and I'm such a great hostess I went dispite my misgivings. Even dragged our family Bronco fan.
Taten and Ethel
Go Broncos Drahma!
From BSU we headed up to Table Rock where we could share a view of the city. I think my last visit up there was 2006... where did all those cell towers come from!?
So now the reunion has come and gone. I'm sad but happy to have had so much time with my 'forever friend'. We are already discussing options for our next get-together. Perhaps we'll be in a town near you?