Tuesday, November 14, 2006

"The Best Things in Life Aren't Things"

Earlier today, on Liz's blog, she wrote about her best birthday present ever. I tried to think what mine was, but nothing came. I was trying to envision something wrapped in fancy paper, tied up with a beautiful bow. But my best birthday present ever didn't come in a package. It came on an airplane in May of 2004. All the way from Ireland. And stayed for a month. It was a visit from my sister

I feel sorry for anyone who doesn't have a sister, because my sister is also my best friend. It wasn't always so. When I was twelve and she was six, I thought she was the biggest pest in the world. I made the mistake of thinking that age made me superior. Had I known then how cool she'd be as a grownup I'd have begged her to tag along with me, instead of hatching elaborate plots to give her the slip. I probably traumatised her for life with my heartless cruelty, but, wonder of wonders, she doesn't hold a grudge.

We've been there for each other through good times and bad. She's always available at the other end of a transatlantic phoneline to talk me through my latest meltdown. She makes me laugh; she makes me cry; she makes me glad to be alive, even when I'm at odds with the rest of the world.

So when she called to tell me she was arriving two days after my birthday, I was ecstatic! No warmup was needed. We met, we hugged and we started talking. My, how we talked! We'd start at breakfast and we'd still be yakking at dessert, over our last cup of tea, sitting out on the porch in the balmy Florida darkness . The OC just shook his head, speechless, no doubt, with admiration for our stamina.

She wasn't much interested in playing tourist. We did take some long walks on the beach. She shopped like a crazy woman, and badgered me into making and finishing a quilt for T, my first grandson. Without her cracking the whip, it might still be among my unfinished symphonies.

Too soon the month was over. On our way to the airport we decided that this was something we needed to do much more often than once every seven years. In 2005 I went and spent a month with her in Ireland. Last summer she cycled across the north of Spain for a month with her husband and their two sons. I'm thinking they can let me have her again next summer........I wouldn't mind at all getting the exact same birthday present as the one I got in 2004.


Stomper Girl said...

My best birthday present was my fella. We got together on my birthday, so its been a present that goes on giving.
But sharing the anniversary with my birthday is tricksy. Some years I forget to do anything for him. Because its all about me, me ,me!

Anonymous said...

Molly, What a lovely blog!
One of our 'life's free treats' can be a sibling! I didnt get to know my sisters or brothers until adulthood, but I had my one full brother through thick & thin.
I really related to your story about your sister.

Blood, truly IS thicker than water!

Anonymous said...

ps, you have changed your comment format, & I cant get it to work as Meggie on the blogspot.

Lily said...

Glad you were able to get you're post done! And I hope Aunt J makes it over for a visit again soon.

Lily said...

Um yeah, that would be your post. Losing my mind up here in the frozen north.

molly said...

Meggie, you'll have to speak to the management...that would be DD Liz, who switched me to the beta version yesterday and I'm a little confused myself about which is my usermame and which is my password and dear Lord did I need another address [google] to keep track of...

My float said...

My brother is the single person in the world who would always do anything in the world for me. He's truly beyond being a good sibling - he's fantastic. Not that we don't fight, of course. I have to keep him in line somehow!

A visit from your sister would be lovely for you. Best of all, it doesn't need wrapping and a card!

Anonymous said...

That's a beautiful story! Thank you for sharing it.