Sunday, July 13, 2008

BFF: Barbara... Thanks for 19 great years so far!

Do you know what BFF means? Best friend forever! She's been my friend since we met in 1989. I advertised in the Plano Star Courier for a roommate to share a house in Plano, because I wanted to get a dog. She wanted a house because she had a dog. Lady, her dog, was a rather macho female dog, part Chow, part Pit-bull, part loyal black lab. Lady was a wonderful dog companion for many years to Barbara.
We found a house together near where I live now. It was a typical rent house with three bedrooms, two baths, a fenced yard. A few surprises were all the rose bushes and fruit trees in the back yard. The leaks in the attic with buckets under them. The other crude repairs made with caulk and/or duct tape around the house. The master bath had 70s wallpaper with silver and brown designs... but I ignored it. Somehow I lucked out and got the biggest bedroom with TWO closets! Room for a sitting area, very neat.
The kitchen was the center of the house. Barb loves to cook and in 1989 she loved to cook mostly vegetarian food. She was slowly becoming a vegetarian, first giving up red meat. Lovely turkey chili. Yummy polish plum dumplings. Red cabbage. Interesting pumpkin pie from scratch. Experiments in the kitchen. That's what I remember the most about cooking with Barbara... it was always fun and an adventure!
In 1990, I located my puppy. Blarney was about eight weeks old, a bundle of spring loaded Jack Russell terrier energy waiting to happen. Barbara's dog, Lady, became his mentor. She watched over him, like a good surrogate mother and taught him all the doggie things like going outside to potty and how to play tug o' war with a rope toy. He loved Barbara and me, but Lady was his first dog friend. She was his "nanny dog".
Later in 1990, we all moved. Blarney and I moved to Richardson to live with a nutsy lady named Anna for six long months. She loved to put him in his kennel at night since I was working late and he liked to bark in the yard. He's a DOG! Anyway we moved as quickly as possible, leaving the deposit behind, to move back to Plano in a two-story townhouse. Barbara had moved with Lady to a neat little duplex over in Carrollton. We got together often along with Barbara's boyfriend David H. David H. worked for a company that was in the telecom business... with her ex-husband Pete. At this point in my life (30), I hadn't yet been married, just was wishing for it and children.
The three of us took trips to East Texas to pick out Christmas trees and visit Grand Saline and the salt palace. We went to Dave's pool and he cooked Chinese for us. It was a good friendship but lopsided since I didn't have a boyfriend for most of the time except when I dated TH, a co-worker of mine who also had worked on the 990 computers. He was a nice guy that was too recently divorced to get involved with. Later I heard that he settled down and remarried. While I had been living at the house of Anna, I answered a personal ad from a guy named DS. DS worked for the same company as I did! It was weird but it's a big company and we didn't cross paths there. Barbara approved of DH so we dated for a long time, eventually living together and contemplating a marriage that didn't happen. He would never commit (you guessed it, previously married and burned by it, he was gun shy). While we lived together, Barbara moved back to Chicago and her family, met and married a great Italian guy named Steve. I was stuck in a rut... dating guys that didn't want to commit to marriage.
I moved to Dallas after completing Leadership Plano. I fled is more like it. Brokeup with DS and Plano simulateously. I lived in a lovely rent house in Lake Highlands with Blarney. We had a chain-link fenced yard full of huge crepe myrtle trees in the back. The house had crank-out windows, wood floors and an antique tiled bathroom... a 3/1/1, it was cozy for me and my dog. I hated living there! Squirels apparently loved the neighborhood. They loved by attic. I thought we had RATS and called the exterminator. After getting to know him too well, he discovered that I had a giant squirrel infestation in the attic. He came over one afternoon and found a "king-sized" squirrel up there. His face was blanched when he told me that, "it was the BIGGEST squirrel" that he had EVER seen. This squirrel infestation evenually drove me to marry the wrong man in order to move back to Plano. Not really but it's a good excuse.
Barbara has stood by me through thick and thin. Friends at a long distance but our hearts never separated. We are sisters without common parents. She was an only child, I was an only child for my 1st 10 years. My sister Beckie is 10.5 years younger than me and has a great deal of room for improvement in the sister business. Barbara is PERFECT (well you know, practically).
When we met, we found at least 6 things in common. We were both the zodiac sign of Cancer, born 20 days apart in 1960. Her father was born on 2/26 exactly 10 years after my father was born on 2/26 in the 20s. Our mother's both smoked like chimneys (my Dad did too). We both loved dogs. We both loved men. We had lots of stuff in common that I can't recall but it was like WOW, are we really sisters that were separated at birth or just cosmicly linked somehow. It's like finding the perfect pair of shoes... they were meant for you. That's me and Barbara. We were meant to be friends and we have been since 1989... 19 years and counting.
Thanks for being my BFF Barbara! I'm looking forward to turning 50 in a couple of years. Hopefully we can find a place that we both want to visit... and celebrate our 50th birthdays together again. It might be Burning Man, it might be Canada or UP Michigan... wherever it is, we'll be there together.

1 comment:

Lozza said...

Thats such a lovely tribute to your friend =o) Thanks for sharing!