Clear out of the blue we received a surprise email today from a couple that we have been trying to locate for months. I had thought that I had their contact information but discovered that I just could not find it. We have not seen Donna and Rob in over thirty-five years but knew that they lived in the SW Pennsylvania area.
I had first met Donna way back in college when she and I, along with about 8 other people, worked together at the University of Michigan as Freshman Orientation Leaders. During the summer, high school students who have been accepted into the University’s upcoming freshmen class are invited to attend a 3 day-long orientation program to help prepare them for the big jump from living at home to leaving home and attending college. During orientation they learned about the university, enrolled in classes, discovered where their classes are located across the University’s various campuses, and how to get there., what university resources and program were available to them, etc., etc., etc. As Orientation Leaders, it was our job to help them through this process, give them tours of the various campuses and feel welcomed to The Big U.
We each had a group of about 25 or 30 soon-to-be-freshman for a 3-day period and the orientation program would last through about a 10-week period over the summer. By the time the summer was over, the ten of us orientation leaders were a pretty close-knit group and it was hard to say goodbye as we each went our own way, focusing on our school work and our respective lives as upper classmen.
Donna and I really did not get close until after we each had married, graduated from college and then discovered that we and our spouses had moved to the East Coast and were living just 40 minutes from each other. Actually, it was thanks to Donna and Mary Margaret that this discovery was made as they shared Christmas letters each year. Donna and her husband, Rob, had moved to Philadelphia where Rob was attending Med School at Thomas Jefferson University and Donna was working as a nurse to put Rob through Med school and getting her Master’s degree at U of Pennsylvania. It was Donna who got MM her interview with U of Penn to transfer and finish her Master’s degree there. Mary Margaret and I had moved to Newark, Delaware where I was getting my Ph.D. at U of Delaware and Mary Margaret was completing her Master’s Degree at U. of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
After Rob graduated they moved back to Southwestern Pennsylvania (where they eventually set up a series of family clinics), then both of our families started having kids, we then moved to California and before we realized it, we kind of lost track of each other. Life just seems to get in the way of things sometimes and over the years, contacts are lost. Sigh!
As it turned out, they somehow discovered our sailing blog when we were sailing and a couple of times a year would check out what we were doing and where we were. They have kept this up when we moved into LeuC and this is how they discovered that we were now in their neck of the woods. Whoo Hoo! These blogs sure are helpful sometimes!
We are so happy they reached out and we have now made arraignments to drive up to Pittsburg this Saturday to spend the day with them and catch up after all of these years. We are so excited and can hardly wait!