Much of the vitality in a friendship lies in the honouring of differences,
not simply in the enjoyment of similarities.
. . . . .
Shadie's birthday always is a signal for me that summer is here. As soon as her birthday comes, I know that the following weeks will be filled with sunshine, get-togethers, and vacations. For me, her birthday is the beginning of summer fun and exciting adventures.
She arrived from Indonesia last Thursday and we met up for lunch at Boni High to celebrate her life. We tremendously enjoyed the food at Italianni's. We spent the whole afternoon talking and laughing. Her actual birthday was the week before Holy Week. She was still in Jakarta then, still, E and I celebrated her birthday over pasta and pizza at Cafe 1771.
But my best memory of Shadie's birthday was in 2007, when D was in the PBB house. All of us were going on a trip to Cebu (and Bantayan Island) to celebrate Shadie's birthday. Everything was ready -- plane tickets and hotel bookings. But then, on the weekend we were to leave, D got nominated for eviction. Without hesitation, all of my friends decided to cancel the trip so they could be around to support D.
So on Shadie's birthday, we stayed in a very nice hotel suite instead and celebrated there. We had lots of food and laughter. But in between the merriment, my friends were scratching vote cards and turned the living room area into a pbb voting zone.
I was very touched.
And D stayed longer in the PBB house.
Everytime I think about that day, I still get teary-eyed in utter gratefulness. It was one of the defining moments of our friendship, at least for me. And like my friends, I always remember defining moments rather than petty misunderstandings and silly assumptions.
I am very lucky.