Sunday, January 26, 2014

Happy Birthday Paula!

This is a very personal post. My oldest and dearest friend Paula turns 60 years old today. Happy Birthday!

 We have known each other 44 years (come on, are we really that old??).  My family moved to Oneida, NY in November of my junior year in high school. Trust me-that is not a great time to change schools. When it got to lunch time I had to walk into the cafeteria all by myself. I decided to sit at the table where the people were laughing the loudest. Sandy, Bob, Tracee and Paula were sitting at that table.  We have been friends ever since.

I was pretty naïve at the time and they taught me things I had never imagined before-some good, some not so good. But Paula and I  always had fun.  We went to dances at the VFW, skipped out of lunch and drove to VVS, and we even dated brothers from Sherrill  I even took my 1st driving test on her car. She was sick as a dog and the guy made her stand outside in a snowstorm while I took –and failed- that test.
Paula ate dinner at my house and slept over all the time.  Her house was my second home ( Do you remember how your mom always laid out our vitamins every morning?)
I was very jealous when they all turned 18 before I did but she helped make my 18th-and 21st birthdays very memorable. On my 18th birthday, we went to a bar in Herkimer and I bought my first legal drink.  On my 21st birthday, we were arrested for walking in the road in Potsdam (Shocked? Luckily it was considered a traffic infraction. We paid a $5 fine).

In Herkimer we had a two bedroom apt. That was it, two bedrooms and a bathroom.  We had to stay friends-I had the hot plate in my room and she had the little refrigerator. Paula, remember when JJ would come over and do card tricks? We would laugh so hard!
After college we still lived near each other.  One time we drove to CT. because she had a job interview. Paula do you remember singing “One Less Bell to Answer” by the 5th Dimension in the car on the way home? God, we thought we were so clever!
Paula introduced me to my husband-we met on a blind date.  I can never thank her enough for that.

After I got married, Paula moved away, became a nurse, and got married.  We don’t see each other often but when we do we slip back into our friendship.  We talk, we laugh, we cry and we remember. We always go to our HS reunions together (Lord knows I could not walk in there alone!) She remembers everyone and is constantly reminding me of this or that.
Paula always sends me jokes and other information via e-mail. We are friends on Facebook. She was at my house this summer; I hoped she would accept a job nearby but things did not work out as I had hoped. But she knows-or I hope that she knows- that I am always there for her. Happy Birthday Paula! And by the way, I am SO glad that you turn 60 before I did!