I met her on my first trip to Mexico, my beautiful, funny friend the harpist. We spent about half a day wandering around the capital together, laughing and talking, and that was all it took to lay the foundation of a friendship as solid and nourishing as any I can ever hope to have.
On my second trip, I arranged to stay a few days with her. As part of my visit, she and her older daughters (10 and 13 then, now both grown and married!) and I took the bus to Taxco so I could buy jewelry and we could wander that city a little.
In one craft market we split up for a while. I found a gorgeous necklace I thought would suit her perfectly. It was a few dozen strands of coral-colored seed beads, a cascade of color to drape around her neck. I bought it and slipped it into my bag, looking forward to surprising her later.
And I did surprise her, but I had a surprise of my own, too. I took out my gift and she took out one for me:
We had bought each other the same necklace! As we happily accepted our gifts and exclaimed over the fabulous coincidence of them, we both noticed there was something just a tiny bit different. The necklace I’d bought for her had a single black bead in the sea of coral. The necklace she’d bought for me had one white bead (which I have hightlighted with extreme subtlety in the photo) … as if we each put a piece of ourselves into the gift, left a signature.
I am remembering that day in Taxco, remembering her beautiful daughters, remembering the necklaces, remembering all the excellent time we’ve spent together both in Mexico and New York because today she arrives! I haven’t seen her since 2006, and today her much-anticipated visit is finally here. I can’t wait to see her.
is hosted by Stacey and Ruth at Two Writing Teachers.