"When you come to a fork in the road, take it."
About seven months ago KDJ, one of my very best friends, was in town from Washington, D.C. for Easter, as she often is. Her sister and family live not far from me, about a 30 minute-drive and KDJ comes out west for the "smaller" holidays like Easter and Thanksgiving since her parents now live in Germany, where she travels for the bigger, longer holidays.
|KDJ and I at the Passion Play.|
Oberammergau, Germany. October 2010.
So a little history. San Francisco is our birthplace. Our parents met around the time I was born. In fact, Linda (KDJ's mom) brought over a meal to my mom the first night I was home from the hospital. I was three days old, and KDJ was just a week shy of her first birthday that day. From that time forward, our families forged a bond that is quite rare in my world, and arguably in most worlds.
|Fred and Linda in the baroque gardens of the Ludwigsburg Palace.|
Ludwigsburg, Germany. October 2010.
Linda and Fred are the only non-blood related (although, technically we are related waaaaaay back - we Mormons are big on genealogy, you know.) who I have called Aunt and Uncle. I love them so much! (And I have long since forgiven Aunt Linda for taking away my bottle when I was two years old.. although, I'm not sure I've really ever gotten over it...) I have many fond memories riding in the back of the blue Peugeot station wagon, Christmases cutting down our own trees, trips to Grandma and Grandpa's farm (Linda's parents), and really just a general feeling of total love and acceptance. They are my family and I love them.
And I love KDJ. She and I were the best of buds when we were little. I can remember many a fort built under my dining room table and many a jump off the stairs at the church on their corner, yelling "AIRBOOOOOOOORNE." (Fred jumped out of planes during Vietnam as part of the Airborne Unit... so naturally, we wanted to be parachute jumpers as well.) And the Halloween parade at school. So many fun times.
KDJ and I were also roommates for two years. The kind who actually shared a room, too. The kind who shared clothes. The kind who agreed that "if you clean the bathroom, I'll clean the kitchen when it's your turn." The kind who fought over whether we'd keep the window open all night when it was snowing outside. The kind who stayed up watching VH1's Insomniac Music Theater. The kind who just grew closer and closer, renewing the childhood bond of two Airborne parachute jumpers. The kind who would do anything for the other.
And so when KDJ asked me if I would accompany her on a trip to Deutschland to see Linda and Fred and go to the Passion Play in Oberammergau, how could I pass it up? Do you KNOW what the Oberammergau Passion Play is? Do you know how hard it is to get tickets? Do you know what an incredible experience it is said to be? Do you know how beautiful the Bavarian countryside can be? Do you know how lovely Fred and Linda are? Do you know how mouth-watering Linda's cooking is? Do you know how much I love them? ... Throw in the hard-earned frequent flier miles and it was simply a no-brainer.
|Where peace can be found.|
Bavaria, Germany. October 2010.
The fork in the road was presented. And I took it. And I'm so incredibly happy that I did. I'm not sure words will be able to express the feelings and thoughts in my heart and mind, but I will attempt over the next few posts and hopefully the pictures will help transport you there. It was so wonderful that I want you to experience it with me. Join me...