I have been missing my best friend from college. We haven’t seen each other in forever. Of course there was Covid but then there was life. We were rarely in the same place at the same time and whoosh — the years have gone by. But I love this woman who upon meeting her – our connection at 19 years old was soulful. We both had boyfriends in Paris, we were both transfer students to Georgetown, we spoke French together (she is actually half french so I had lots of catching up to do). We both loved to be silly, and philosophical, loved art and our families were each in flux when we met. She was Catholic, I am Jewish- we shared our traditions and created our own. My parents were getting divorced, her’s were already split. Nary a topic was taboo and almost all relatable.

We headed west to work at her Dad’s real estate company after college in Alberta, Canada and she fell in love. That was it. I went back east after the summer and she didn’t. From then on, it was phone calls and letters but it wasn’t so easy back then without social media. Hard to imagine how we did it without social media.

The years ticked by, each of our lives happened…the celebrations and sadness, the weddings and funerals her boys growing up, my boys too— so many boys. We have stayed connected. So, after this Thanksgiving we decided it was time and we decided to meet for Tea.

As I walked into Saks to meet her, there was a crowd gathered outside of the Salvation Army stand with music blasting and people clapping. As I edged my way closer I was treated to a brilliant dance performance by the Salvation Army man in uniform. I’ve never seen so many people move toward the donation bucket — usually people avoid the bell and calls for giving and step around the solicitor but this time – the man was a magnate for love and giving. The tone was set for our reunion.

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The lights of Saks where brighter than any Christmas Tree energizing the shoppers. Normally it was too much for me but this time I felt gratitude that a department store was thriving in real time versus on-line. Walking out of this two year time warp of masked up shopping or none at all – I loved seeing the shoppers in all kinds of dress up, outrageous looks, too much of everything, all the vendors bustling and the absorbing the healthy chaos.

As I walked up to our agreed Tea spot at L’Avenue with a direct view of the Rockefeller Christmas Tree sparking — there was the woman who carries half my shared story — so much history -and half my name – as we had renamed ourselves as half of each other years ago.

“Hello Felavere”

“Hello Verafel”

We laughed, stepped in for the most delicious hug, settled in on a couch and the time between faded.


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