To be more precise, two-thousand one-hundred forty-two miles is the distance from here to there. Day and hours is only a driving estimate because I could board a plane and be there in about two – maybe three – hours. Shorter yet, I can, and usually do, nervously tap a few clicks on my antiquated Dell keyboard and be connected right quick on Facebook. Whatever means to the end, I could guarantee – experiencing only the latter of the three – an ensuing conversation with my friend, Daniella*, would always be in the queue of my little lightening bubble.

Of course, I can’t reveal the exact location or name of said she-person … that would be unethical until such time permission is granted to edit this post. I also know she reads my blog entries and I could be in a world of jujitsu hurt if I ever DID show up in person at her house, so …

Some really boring back-story details: On January 27th, 2017, we had a re-connection when I sent her a picture (on FB) of a guitar I purchased and she replied back, “That is gorgeous”. This was more of a comment & message to an earlier post I generated on my personal page. PS Thanks for yawning your way through that!!

… Over thirty years since high school. Way before Facebook. A time when Daniella and I had our faces in real books as classmates in high school. Can’t say we knew each other well enough to hang out in the local mall together and share walk-man headphones listening to Run D.M.C., The Police, or Billy Joel. Could have been, though, because we were music minors loving the sounds of life.

Memory has a goofy way of checking out the roses while the thorns poke you in the butt. That said, I am not going to spend much time in the reminiscence garden for that very reason. What I know – with absolute certainty – is everything from January 27th, 2017 forward IS known. The lightening bolt sphere I always referred to, casually, as my personal “bubble of knowledge” had been thunderously awakened. Accepting most information at face value in general comments, the depth of understanding I missed through this acceptance was Mariana Trench huge. To Yoda-size, “Leap of faith I made”…

To my credit or fault, I sent Daniella a PM in September of that year:

“Had my mind altered a bit after watching Trevor Noah….Something I am guilty of and didn’t know it. Every time there’s a protest – especially by minorities – my response is to say, “you can protest, but just in another way (ie NFL kneel)”. Trevor made a fantastic point…and it made me think. If that line of thinking holds, just WHEN and WHERE can a protest be made? If that’s the excuse I’ve used every time, as Trevor said, apparently I don’t believe they can protest. He pointed out 5 instances in the past when someone like me used the “you can, but not here” excuse. Seems like I gots some more of that learnin’ to do….

I made a promise not to write any specific words from Daniella out of respect for her privacy. It is from my value system I have veiled trust. Her response began a dialogue we’ve continued to this day. It would be a wonderful exercise in humanity (and an absolute violation in trust *see jujitsu comment above*) to copy and paste our entire PMs here. I’d love for you, my readers, to see the transformative power of open and honest words between friends.

To say, “Daniella and I touched the tip of the political spear” … would be to say “Star Wars was a two-bit, no good, overacted, piece of cinematic clammy Wookiee poop.” We plunged that spear into the belly of the beast many times over, slaying a never dead subject as it’s head continually rose with every headline and tweet.

She, the passionate, eerr…. uhm, ardent, intense, most likely left side of the aisle believer in all things that way. I, the independent, but right leaning sort-of persuadable, open minded, passionate believer in all things that way.

Not everything is, or was, politics. Bell curve it … and, yes politics would be the meat. We’ve been back and forth about faith now and then as well. Lighter stuff, mostly, save the occasional WTF was that! She’s a fan of this blog which gives my fingers tingles and I am keenly aware of her appreciation for my “minor” influences prevalent among pianist endeavors on my recent CD.

The ups and downs of a bell curve, however, are minimal compared to the successes and failures in life we live. It was so hard to see thirty years into the future living out of acid-wash denims, Members Only jackets, and bright neon shirts. Big calculators didn’t have capacity for spheres of knowledge. Quite honestly, it was a good thing because two teenagers didn’t have the maturity for it either.

The purpose today isn’t to laud and honor Daniella’s political position … of which I am sure some may disagree. I have come to highly respect, through listening and research, her point of view because that’s what evolving adults do. She has helped me understand “the other side”. I am taking her cart of knowledge into my garden, planting some of her seeds, and seeing what grows.

Our last GIF a few days ago quotes Dr. Evil, “Come Join Us”. The context between Daniella and I doesn’t really matter much. If you join us in the community of understanding each other through listening and reaching out, we can begin to solve some smaller problems together. As I wrote above, “seems like I gots some more of that learnin’ to do….“, Daniella, I believe, knows that.

The climate here is much different over two-thousand miles away so I don’t know what my garden will bear. It takes time for these things to grow … maybe another thirty years, perhaps? … and that’s perfectly fine.

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