Anne wraps up chocolate bars, tea bags, soap and hair clips in very pretty paper and sends them priority mail to mark special events.
When Maxidoodle went through his jigsaw puzzle phase she wrote him letters on blank puzzles and sent them in the mail all broken up.
She calls to reminds me when it is free cone day at Ben and Jerry’s.
When Juan left me, Anne planned a trip to fly down from Boston by herself with an infant in tow. She planned it two weeks out so that I would have something to look forward to. Knowing she was coming allowed me to put one foot in front of the other during those lonely two weeks.
Anne is the strongest person I know. Six weeks after the death of her infant son she held my newborn and told me he was beautiful.
Anne was my first grown-up friend who “got me”–took me for face value without an ounce of judgement. No matter how kooky I am it doesn’t phase her–she understands.
Anne has known me at my most irresponsible, my most childish, my most hateful, my most selfish and my saddest hours and has continued to love me without a second thought.
Anne is never afraid to ask questions. Her curiousity about the smallest of details delights me. For nearly twenty years she has forced me to slow down and really look and attempt to answer why.
Anne is honest with herself about her feelings, no matter how ugly or scary they may be. She expects the same of me too.
She writes letters longhand.
Anne knows how to laugh. She and I can laugh for hours. Her laughter is like music to me–a deep Buddha like sound. A prayer. We laugh about everything–the hysterically funny, the absurd, the joyful and the sad.
She knows where all the good bargains are. She shares that information with me.
She sang”Me and Bobby McGee” to a packed house and would have made Janis herself proud.
She uses perfect grammar. I don’t and she never ever makes me feel bad about it.
She listens with a big wide open compassionate heart to everyone she talks to.
She has tutored adults who don’t know how to read.
She goes to dances with her uncle-in-law Leo.
She taught me about Trader Joes, rooibus tea, non-toxic cleaning products, Garcia-Marquez, Madrid, Irish immigration French cooking, copper pots and countless other topics.
She has spent hours with me wandering around bookstores.
She loves the library and the beach and The New Yorker and Brainchild Magazine as much as I do.
She says “I love you” without fear.
Annie with her precious daughter Isabel two years ago on a rescue mission to Maryland.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY ANNIE! May your year be full of abundance and joy!