How friendships begin

Hi everyone,

Today I’m looking forward to the arrival of our friend Julie Strickland, and her friend Harvey, from Moultrie, Georgia. A number of years ago Julie, then a librarian, facilitated my visit to her school in Funston. I could tell by the way Julie went about making arrangements, preparing students and teachers, and keeping me informed at each step that I was in the hands of someone I could trust.

On the way to Moultrie we would be passing through Thomasville, Georgia, and I knew that Bailey White lived in that area. I loved her voice on public radio and read her books, Mama Makes Up Her Mind and Good Year for Plums, more than once. I got in touch with Bailey to see if I might stop by to say hello but she was to be in another community building a wheelchair ramp to the porch of an aunt.

So on we went to Moultrie and what turned out to be a delightful visit with kids and teachers at Funston Elementary School. It was also how our friendship began. Mostly through e-mail but also with occasional visits at conferences and once at a restaurant where we arranged to meet, Sandy and I have remained in touch with Julie and followed her adventures as a college teacher, elementary school volunteer, tutor, potter, tennis player, gardener, loving caregiver to her sister until the end, and so much more.

When I want an opinion I can trust, Julie is always on my list. She never lets me down. I’m excited that she’s coming today, even if it meant that my M.O.W. made me dust and vacuum and clean up my mess yesterday.

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