A few weeks ago I got to hog my best friend , Nikki, for about 6 hours while she was here for a waytooshort visit. Nikki and I met about 15 years ago when my family started attending the church she and her family went to. While I was first intimidated by the fact that she is a year older than me (when you're 13/14 that's a BIG deal) I soon found that she isn't just a kindred spirit. She is my bosom friend. So much so that once when playing a game of Pictionary against her brother, Willie, and our friend, Gabe, they got mad because we knew each other so well that one of us would start drawing a little line and the other would know the answer.
In the past 15 years our friendship has grown and changed a lot. Through every season she has been the Anne to my Diana, the carrots to my peas, the Thelma to my Louise, and the Yang to my Grey. The past few years have been so different for us as we've married and started our families. We went from working together five days a week and seeing each other every Sunday to wives and mommies who have other people to take care of and a new life to figure out. There have been times when I feel like we are so far apart not just physically but also relationally. And when you've been close friends for so long it makes you feel like your life is missing some thing vital. But, thankfully, those feelings become faint when we have even just a few minutes to be together or talk. One of those moments happened this last time we were together. But to explain that I have to give you a little history.
There is a small shopping center in a city nearby that had, for many years, a Target with a Barnes & Noble/Starbucks right across the parking lot. I know, perfect world, right!?! I think it is probably our most frequented shopping spot. Well, in the last few years the Big Mall across the street stole the Barnes & Noble (Which I've come to accept because they made it two stories. And put a Starbucks in it.). But what the Big Mall left in it's wake is, to me, a catastrophe. Sure, they left the Starbucks, but right next to it they put a....Petco! And I know. There is a wall separating the two stores, but I'm sorry, Petco smells like...well, pets. Gross!
Since this happened, for some reason or other, Nikki and I haven't been there together. But when I've gone with Nathan I refuse to get coffee at the Petco Starbucks because it's gross. And Nathan thinks I'm weird. And mildly snobbish.
So, back to our recent visit. Nikki and I are leaving said shopping center and she turns and looks and this disaster of a store set up and says, "It may just be me, but I can't bring myself to get coffee from a Starbucks that is right next to a pet store." And at that point I became a more whole human being.