*One of the most beautiful people I know, inside and out, is my best friend Tracy. I have had the pleasure to know her for 16 years and she is who made leaving California so difficult. I have always loved her and always will. I miss her every day. I miss her honesty, candor, grand sense of humor, curiosity, unconditional love, beauty, ability to light up a room with comfort and ease, the sound of her laughter. She's the only person I know who can eat garlic and smell so good. I miss our long talks, just us too, some where in Tiburon on a dock with late morning cocktails headed to Sausalito, a small little hotel, Starbucks, sun, good food, her shopping, me admiring everything. I miss her on the exercise machines while I sit and eat a Carl's Jr. hamburger and fries. I miss the time I left my last Intermediate Algebra test on our kitchen counter top so she could celebrate with me, no more math; she saw my dislike of the subject and how diligently I needed to work to complete it--wanted to get right to my studies in literature. We drank that day too. I love the way she pops chocolates in her mouth (just one) with her morning cup of coffee. She scared me one day when she left our shared house in her blue Ford Probe. It flipped with her in it--it was the other person's fault. She came home without the car--it was odd because she knocked on our front door instead of using the genie--wide eyed, big circles of ice blue. We drank that day too. Alot. She loves to eat homemade sandwiches with onion slices as thick as a finger. And she loves spicy foods. She's a home designer at heart but works in law. She can make any house look fancy (like it's straight from the best home decor magazines). We nearly went broke one day shopping at Linens&Things for our shared bathroom. Later, our other roommate moved out and Trace took the master bedroom. She did a complete and total makeover! She made a beautiful photo album of my daughter's life with fresh flowers from the service pressed into the back pages. She included letters my daughter had written to me while in school. I don't know how she selected the photos or why she chose certain ones. There's even a John Holst middle school identification card. I miss accompanying her at the mall during a lunch hour at work and hearing her critique shoes and pants and why some were cute, others were not. I miss hearing her call me "schoolmarm" because of my long skirts and high turtlenecks--the same worn out green sweater that she begged me to throw away. Her, running in the opposite direction when I reveal my unshaven, hairy legs and arms. I'm good on all that now--sometimes. She'd scream out "That's just fuckin gross!" She held up, my bras, from our clean laundry and said, "Is this my thong?" and reminded me I was part of the itty-bitty titty committee. We used to go dancing into the wee hours. She taught me so much about men, but called me "The Ice Queen" because I would not give guys the time of day. I wasn't interested; I was mourning. And I loved walking along her side and seeing guys drool over her beauty. We have a saying: JENN&JUDY--it's serious. Instead of swearing by God, which we do sometimes, we swear by my dead daughter and her dead mother, their graves. In restaurants, we'd order a big plate of something good, but healthy and "split" it. We did Chevys all the time--and margaritas. And sometimes, we'd start our Saturday mornings with the blender--margaritas. Saturday evenings started with Trace going on a date, me with my head in my books. Most of the time, I'd wait up for her to hear if 'he' was the one--and always, she'd tell me everything! We were truly Chardonnay girls! All the way. We still are. There's so much, I could go on and on. I love her mostly though because I could always look the other way and she'd still be there caring for me, loving me, being the true meaning of "friend."
And then, my godson, Christopher. He has been in my life since he was five years old. He clung to me like my own and has grown to be such a handsome, smart young man. He's serving our country and speaks fluent Farsi, which I have always encouraged. He and I used to drive his mother nuts because we would run around the house and play. He stole my attention from everyone!
I have been so fortunate to have them in my life. I don't have but about three very close, good friends--I've never been the type to have a lot of girls by my side or guys either for that matter. But the ones I do have, I cherish and am so grateful.
I miss my Trace like crazy, but she's still here and so am I.
photo taken by me in Davis, CA 2002 or 2003