Over the last few weeks I have had the great pleasure of attending book events throughout our city/province. It has been and I know it will continue to be an honour to share my story, Tasting Rain, with those who come to visit me. It is during these events that I, too, am privileged to listen to others share their stories of how they were able to overcome challenges that life will present to us at one time or another.
In preparing for my Mother’s Day event this past Saturday, I wanted to offer free refreshments throughout the event. No purchase necessary…just a simple offering to reach out and to connect to the people in my city. I was told to call a woman who would most definitely be able to supply me with what I required. Seven numbers is all that separated two long-ago friends from being reconnected with one another. When I was first given this woman’s uncommon name I quickly thought to myself, ‘Could this be my Romalda from over 15 years ago? And if it was, would she remember me? Would she know how much I loved and admired her? Did I even tell her back then how much she meant to me?’ I would not know if this woman was the woman from my past because I had to leave a message on her machine to call me back. And call me back she did. When I answered the phone and heard only four words come out of her mouth…I knew in that very moment…this indeed was my Romalda! We talked for almost 45 minutes to try and catch up on each others lives. I was not going to pass up on this opportunity to let Romalda know for certain how much she meant to me all those years ago.
You would think from this story that she and I were the best of friends, but we were not. We were only business associates back then, but for me, she was so much more. She was a very bright light to me when, during that time, a good portion of my life was filled with so much darkness and unhappiness. I remember when I hung up from that incredible call it was difficult to wipe the smile from both my face and heart. So, I simply let the smiles occupy both places for as long as they wished to stay with me.
Now here comes the best part. Romalda felt the same way about me. We just laughed and were amazed that after all these years we thought that neither of us ever knew how much we meant to each other. There are no accidents in life. The timing of this reunion was to happen exactly the way it was meant to happen. To quote another very dear friend of mine (who just happened to send me a note on facebook right at the exact time Romalda and I were taking these pictures), said:
Never underestimate the impact your presence might have on another…yours may be the hand that guides them from the darkest of nights.