And we apparently live in a good location for surprise visits from some of these dear friends!
We have never lived anywhere that saw this much traffic. Some places, we have a hard time getting kin to visit! But here, I think we must be centrally located or something. This summer, I got a message on FB from a friend we had not seen since May of 2004. We were stationed in Germany with her now husband. We knew her, too, before they were married. And how funny, she was driving with her two small children to meet her hubby at the end of a long deployment. I love it that she called and agreed to come and stay with us. I am telling you, I get so upset when people say, "I drove right by your exit and thought of you." What!? Why didn't you CALL!? So if you are in the area, for the love of Pete, CALL! Anyway, we had the best time eating and hanging out and having a few beers. And even though they had never met, the kids loved playing together! And we picked right up where we left off. That's the army way!
The next generation of Army Friends!
Then last week, I got a call from an Air Force friend who was also stationed with us in Mannheim, Germany. He was going to be here at Scott overnight and wanted to see if we could catch up. Uh, yeah, of course! So he came over and had supper with us. Awesome! We had the best time remembering our time together. It was somewhat sad because his youngest son was born while we were in Germany. He was the youngest baby I had ever seen before my own were born! I got to take his grandmother and older brother to the hospital to meet him when he was born. Of course, he is now 8! Where does the time go? Anyway. He was our first Air Force friend and it was so good to see him. I always laugh because his oldest son was 3 when we met, and he was a hoot. I used to beg them to let me babysit him. One time I asked him about his Daddy's work. He told me, "Oh, my Daddy doesn't work! He is a pilot!"
Then the very next day, one of our best friends who just got home from Iraq was driving from Kansas to Ohio to see his family. And wouldn't you know it, St. Louis was right on his way! So he popped in for a quick sandwich on his way through. He was at Ft. Stewart when we were there the first time (he was also in Germany when we were AND at Ft. Lee). He and another friend mowed my grass for me when I was pregnant with Jessa and David was deployed. He spent Christmas with us at Mimi's house one year and opened all of Jessa's presents - she was 2 months old. He was even at her Christening. Sadly, David did not get to see him. Our friend was pulling onto base, as David's plane was taking off. But I so enjoyed seeing him and catching up.
Spencer welcoming our friend and our hero home from Iraq!
That is the thing about the Army. Sometimes it may feel like we have no roots and we are always on the move. But the up side of that is you are always making new friends. And as sad as you are to leave people behind, you know that you will see them again. These are forever friends. We share holidays and special occasions and births of babies. We are there to help each other when there is no one else around. We understand each other. We can pick up where we left off like no time has passed. And when you do see them, maybe it is not like you plan or think it will be or even when you think, but these friendships that are born out of our military bond are pretty strong. And pretty amazing.
So, if you are in the area, y'all stop by, ya hear?