Last night I had the opportunity to spend time with some truly remarkable friends. When I left the USA five years ago I didn’t think I had a friend left in the world; last night put the lie to that thought big time. A huge THANK YOU to MJ (Marijoyce) for putting it all together, and to all the wonderful people who took time out of their busy schedules to attend and reconnect. Most of the folks were from my banking days but a fair number of non-banking friends also showed up. Wonderful.
I couldn’t keep the smile off my face and my cheeks kind of hurt this morning (but it’s a good hurt). I could have spent hours on end talking to each friend in turn, but Happy Hours aren’t conducive to long-winded in-depth conversations. I would estimate there were at least 30+ attendees (I will have to do a headcount once I see the pictures) which both surprised and pleased me. I was hesitant about returning to the States and reconnecting but I shouldn’t have been.
There was Don and Danny who I hadn’t seen in over 34-years (from maybe the best company I ever worked for); there was Judy my first Operations Supervisor who helped me to become a better manager and Lilly and Norma who continued the effort to further develop me—not an easy task for them. There was Tim a fellow wildlife photographer and photographic inspiration and MJ, Bev and Gary who were branch manager buddies. My good friend Andy (who is now retired and living the good life).
My special buddy Vickie (the Vic-meister) pictured above and her husband Carl. Carol, Christina and Mary who became friends later in my banking career. There was Loni the one person who encouraged me to follow my dreams of becoming a professional photographer (thank you Sweet Pea). Ryan who was a great employee, a good friend and still makes me laugh. Marcy was there—probably the most patient boss I ever had (and the only one I ever apologized to for being such a jerk).
My son Shawn (who transported us to Hooley’s Uber-style) and Joel (my brother and ever constant travelling companion) were also there. They had met some of my friends before; others for the first time. Some folks unfortunately had to cancel at the last-minute for various reasons but hopefully we’ll hookup before I leave again sometime around August/September. The evening was a complete success as far as I’m concerned and I thoroughly enjoyed every single minute. Once again, THANK YOU MJ.