Eileen moved to my town at the beginning of freshman year in high school. They sat us alphabetically in a lot of our classes so I was always in the back of the room. Since Eileen was new she got put behind me. I don’t remember this but evidently I came home from school and said to my mother in a tone of awe, “I’ve met a girl who has been to the Metropolitan Museum of Art”. Eileen would sit behind me in class and pull her gum out of her mouth over and over which drove me nuts. Later in life she did admit that she did it just to annoy me.

She’s always been one of those people who has floated among many groups so unlike most in high school she was never part of a set clique. She was in drill team however, the only friend of mine who was…. She always looked good in the blue sweater she had to wear on game days. Eileen has always looked good in jewel tones. She went to South Africa as an exchange student in high school. I wrote her constantly–it was almost kind of a journal for me. She wrote me back once or twice. Now that I think of it—it’s just like now with my blog….

Anyway, we’ve been through a lot together—many phases of her life and many of mine. We went to college together and also to a lot of Vertebrats shows together. We’ve lived together and lived near each other. Now we live three hours apart. It’s not that far but as my life has become more complicated in the last several years it has become harder and harder to make the time and effort to see each other. She’s one of my husband’s best friends too. She was with us for the birth of both our children and even though she doesn’t have children she still somehow guided me through those first months. My parents kind of consider her a fourth daughter and I always feel part of her family. The other day I posted on here that I was going to go look at couches around Chicago though and next thing I knew I had a phone call from Eileen saying she would meet us.

It made me so happy to see her. I feel more myself around her.

Eating lunch at Ikea:


Leo and Eileen:


The joys of escalators. The boys don’t realize we have them here in town because we never go to the mall. Are there any others here??