Sunday, June 7, 2009

Tribute to a Good Friend

I started this post A LONG time ago, but somehow life got in the way of me finishing. I mention that our guest "arrives tomorrow night." Well, he actually left almost a month ago obviously I dropped the ball on this one. I'll just post what I started and then post about our trip, now that it's passed.

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I've been meaning to get this up sooner, but for some strange reason (house projects, house projects, and more projects) have hindered me a bit. I'd better finish the post today, though, since our guest arrives tomorrow night.

I have a friend, Peter, who I've known since we were about 10. He and his family moved into our town in California when his father, a Japanese professor, started to teach at UC Berkley. Our parents were the same age, we are both the oldest children, and we even have birthdays within 2 weeks of each other. He attended a private school in Berkley while I finished up elementary school in town. When we both started Middle School we ended up seeing a lot of each other. Plus, we lived less than a mile apart. We ended up in a lot of the same classes and were both in the band. He played the clarinet and I played the trumpet. Over the years we became great friends and our "separate circles" began to overlap a lot.

He moved away just before we both turned 16, when his father accepted his ultimate position as a Japanese professor at BYU. Even though he'd moved, we still managed to keep in pretty good touch, which is nothing short of a miracle since we are both terrible with this kind of thing. He even engineered a West Coast tour for his high school choir, including a stop at our high school. Through the years we've stayed in touch (inconsistently) and he's been a great listening ear along the way. We're pretty lucky that he'll be able to come out and visit for the rest of the week. Stacy has been trying to find a way to get the two of us together for a while now, and all the pieces finally fell into place. I'm really looking forward to seeing Peter and catching up, although the Google Chat has made that even easier lately.

Here is a quick list of memories, just for old times' sake. Some are obvious and others are apparent only to the participants. All could be pretty good conversation starters, though.

* Suspension for stink bombs on the bus
* Way too many band reviews to even count
* Late night D&D games, or Car Wars, or whatever role-playing game we were playing at the time
* Band camp at Silver Lake, even after you'd moved
* Scout camp with some crazy fathers
* The Miner Special on the way to the camp (Two hamburger patties, topped with chili and cheese, followed by a week enclosed in tents--do the math.)
* "Oh Sweet Pete"
* Family dinners on Sunday
* Holiday get-togethers

They say that a healthy approach to life is to have a number of acquaintances with a few close friends. I've been fortunate enough to have a close friend like Peter for most of my life. Thanks, Peter for being "that friend."

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Peter's visit was great. We ate some great food (are you really surprised by that?), made a trip to Philadelphia, visited Amish country, and even got in a rounds party. Once again, life with guests is usually far busier than our actual day-to-day life, but we really love to host and entertain so it's all worth it. Peter kept Mountain time and I scheduled my patients on Eastern time so by the time I was done working for the morning, Peter was ready to play. The kids loved showing him games on the Wii, stories, gymnastics, drawings, and anything else they show everyone who comes to visit. All in all, it was a very fun few days.


A fantastic Portuguese meal, Pork with Little necks. Not every guest is so lucky.


Outside the pretzel factory in the heart of Amish Country.


The kids enjoyed the Amish rockers.

Cheesesteaks, Independence Hall, and the Liberty Bell. Not bad for an afternoon.


Standing in front of Independence Hall.


Our kids make friends everywhere. Here's Thing 1 with her new friend


Sitting outside the Vistors' Center.


Together right before Peter had to leave (we were enjoying brunch at some friends' house). Thanks for a great trip!


emily said...

That's so nice! I'm sad to say that I have only one or two friends from childhood left, and I rarely see them. This is so nice for you guys!

Boquinha said...

THAT was a fun visit!! Peter is a great friend and a really easy house guest! I love that he and Mark are such good friends and I'm glad that I get to be a part of that, too.

Dr. Mark said...

And thanks, Little Miss, for making this happen. You don't get enough credit for the things you do to make life enjoyable around here.

Gary said...

It was good to see you two together again. I have great memories of scout camp with you guys.

Boquinha said...

Thanks, Sweetie. I love you.

Gary said...

I love you too. Oh, that was for Mark, not me. Sorry.

Boquinha said...

ROTFL! I love you, too, Gary.

J Fo said...

Haha to Gary's comment. perfect! That looks like a nice visit. It certainly makes things much more enticing!