A year ago memories…That never happened…

She decided to look at her reflection in the glass of the little red car, assuming it was another hornbill, perhaps a possible mate. For more, please click here.

As I read the year-ago post, I felt a little melancholy. It was a post about how we assumed we were leaving in one month on February 15, 2019. See the post here.

We were getting ready for an upcoming birthday dinner party for our friend Rita (husband Gerhard), whom we’d met from our site, who ended up living in the same house in Marloth Park where we’d lived for three months in 2013/2014. 

They rented the house when our site-directed them to Louise, our dear friend and property manager who’d rented the Hornbill House to them and us, and then four years later rented the Orange House to us. 

Rita and Gerhard became friends fast enough to host Tom’s birthday party on December 23, 2018, and reciprocate joyfully. We decided to host Rita’s birthday party several weeks later. 

The same wonderful group of friends was coming to the party. Linda and Ken from Pretoria were coming to stay with us for a week, adding to the excitement and fun.

In the interim, we were all headed to Tambarina Restaurant for dinner that night for the first celebration of Rita’s birthday. We all loved a reason to celebrate, and then again, we didn’t always need a motive other than the pleasure of sharing time.

Kathy had arranged a going away “girl’s day” for me on February 5th to include pedicures and lunch. That never happened.

Kathy and Don were hosting a going away party for us on Friday, February 8th. That never happened.

The next night on February 9th, our last Saturday night in the bush, we were all getting together for dinner at Jabula. That never happened.

Leaving for Kenya for a fantastic tour and numerous safaris was on the schedule, with our intended departure date on February 15th, the day our visas ended. That never happened.

Eighty-four days later, we were supposed to be in Minnesota. That never happened.

On Friday night, February 8th, after the heart disease diagnosis with the subsequent emergency open-heart surgery scheduled for February 12th, Kathy and Don invited all of us for dinner at their house. I’ll never forget that night when we all sat around the fire in their garden, sharing stories and our deepest feelings.

The next night, February 9th, we all met again for my pre-surgery dinner party. It was a bittersweet evening with loving friends. I’ll never forget these times with heartfelt gratitude and devotion.

So, reading yesterday’s post reminded me of all of these events, which will permanently be emblazoned in our hearts and minds, grateful for our friends and for Dr. Theo, who discovered my condition on a hunch.

Yes, as we look forward to heading to India in 15 days, we’ll never forget what we’ve left behind and prayed for the days we’ll all be together again.

May you enjoy good health and loving friends.

Photo from one year ago today, January 14, 2019:

“Pig in a pond.” Mom opted for a sitz bath on the steamy hot day while the youngsters played nearby in the bush. For more, please click here.

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