Renew old acquaintances before it’s too late

Published 12:00 am Thursday, January 5, 2006

A few months ago when I was in Virginia, my cousin Wayne told me he had run into a brother of a friend we had not seen since we were teenagers. He told Wayne that she was living back in the area and he should drop by where she worked.

This friend, June, was someone we had spent a great deal of time with from the time I was about 11 until I was 16. At that time she married and moved to Texas. That was about 49 years ago. It is impossible to think that much time has passed or that we are that old. Where do the years go?

When we went to the place Wayne thought her brother said she was working, no one knew anything about her. So I looked up her brother’s number in the telephone book and called him after I got home. I got June’s number from him and tried several times before I reached her. It was a joy to talk to her after all those years. We wrote and exchanged photos. I planned to get up there to see her on her day off. But as things go it took a while before I could get there.

Last week I decided it was time to just do it. You never know when you may wait and it turns out to be too late to do something. None of us are promised tomorrow.

So I called Wayne and June. We arranged to meet at Country Buffet in Colonial Heights. We met at 11 a.m. and stayed for three hours or more talking. It was a wonderful meeting. She still looked and sounded like the same person, except her hair had turned brown instead of being the blonde it used to be.

When we were young we used to sit on her bed and talk for hours about everything. We walked many a mile and talked and laughed, just going nowhere in particular. Back then it was safe to walk anywhere at any time. Wayne and her brother Gary were usually with us. We lost Gary just past his 17th birthday in a car wreck. I still have a hard time with that at times because even after June left, Gary and I spent time together. It was so unexpected and final. You never think you or anyone you know can die when you are young.

When we met this past week, we found that we still could talk to each other about anything. Many of our experiences in life have come close to being the same. June still has her sense of humor and ability to charm everyone. My granddaughter, who went with me, thought she was great.

Wayne called me after I returned home and told me how much he enjoyed seeing June again. It was a good experience and one we sometimes do not have the opportunity to enjoy. I am thankful her brother pointed the way for us. I hope to get to Virginia to see her and Wayne more often.

There are many ways to find people now. Three of my cousins tracked me down several years ago through the Internet. We had lost touch and not seen each other for about 20 years. Two of my cousins and I had all moved during that time and lost touch. When they called me it was an exciting time for all of us. We have visited many times since that day and have found that memories have kept us close and we are not much changed from the people we were. Our likes and dislikes and mannerisms are very alike. We think that was our grandmother’s influence on us. She helped raise us all.

Is there someone in your past that you would like to renew a friendship with or a relative you have lost touch with? Take the plunge and track them down. You may find as Wayne and I did that it will enrich your life and bring you some unexpected happiness.