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Meeting a friend in 3D

I am in Stuttgart, Germany. I am here because of Bianca. I have known and come to love Bianca for these past three years. This is the first time, though, we have hugged.

That is because we have come to know each other through our online meditation group. We have come to know each other as an animated yet flat version of a little person in a little Zoom box on a little computer screen.

Bianca lives in Germany. I live in America. Now I am traveling. I have often said: I have family all over the world I have not met yet. This is a poetic way of feeling connected. Now though, this sentiment is literally true. Bianca and I landed together in what I call our "Meditation Family." We are part of a family. Get ready to dance cause Ima say... We are family.

Real live people!

Bianca arranged for me to stay with Andrina. Andrina has offered me an apartment in her home that doubles as her office and Airbnb/guest space. It is amazing to be here. She is amazing. The other amazing thing that is happening in Stuttgart, Germany (as if I need another amazing thing to happen in Stuttgart, Germany) is Eli.

My dear friend Melody, her husband Michael, and their daughter Julia live in Haverhill, Massachusetts. Their son, Eli is in the military.

Melody and I became close friends in high school. Besides loving Melody, I loved Mel's sister, Shari, and their mom, Phyllis. They loved my dad because he went to their house at odd hours to fix things that suddenly stopped working.

Melody and I are both turning 65 this year (well, I already got there; Mel meets me on that milestone precipice soon). High school to age 65 is a long time. We have been friends for a long time.

When either of us got married (once for her, twice for me) we were there for each other. We each had two babies. We have watched each other raise our children and our children grew up knowing each other. Our families were together for celebrations and hardships. When Michelle died, it was Melody who slept in my bed with me for days after everyone else had to leave.

Melody's son, Eli, is stationed in a US military base that is a 20-minute drive from where I am staying in Stuttgart.

On Monday, when I arrived, Eli picked me up at the Stuttgart airport. He said he was on a lunch break and it was super close. When I stepped out of the airport and saw him, I think what came out of me can be officially called a squeal. I definitely squealed. And then we hugged. I may have held on a long time. Here in my arms was Eli... in Stuttgart, Germany. At one point, Eli timed our hug because it was so long.

Bianca must leave Stuttgart on Saturday so we're trying to get in daily visits. Eli works during the week and has weekends off. It really is perfect timing.

Eli and I plan to do some European traveling together over the next two weekends. More shall be revealed!

Very soon, I hope to backtrack and write about my last week in Turkey. For now, I wanted to let you know where in the world I am and the awesomeness that is happening here.

Flying on Sun Express from Antalya, Turkey to Stuttgart, Germany

View from Bianca's apartment

Bianca in her kitchen

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