Thanks to Facebook, I reconnected with two childhood friends over Christmas break while in California. And what better place than Portillo’s – a popular chain I discovered in Chicago that now has a location in Buena Park, California. (Just down the street from Knott’s Berry Farm.)
Dennis I’ve known since we were in a 4th and 5th combination class at Gompers Elementary. I don’t remember now which grade it was, but Dennis transfered in mid-year and soon we were best buds. We met Richard a few years later and by junior high (Bancroft Junior High) and during my freshman year at Lakewood High School, we walked to and from school together every day down Coldbrook Avenue. I moved away to Chicagoland that summer and as often happens, I lost track of them. Over the years I often tried to look them up and a few years ago we found each other online. I believe Richard actually found me and then connected me with Dennis, as they had kept in touch. In fact, until just recently, Richard lived in the same house having inherited from his parents. He lived there for like 40 years! I could have just gone and rang the doorbell on one of my many trips to California!
Over a long lunch we had a LOT of catching up to do with 31 years since we likely last talked. Life has taken each of us on an incredible journey and it was amazing to hear the stories and the life lessons learned along the way. I was so blessed to see these guys still are following God despite the challenges God has allowed into each of our lives over the past several decades. So it really was a reunion of brothers. Richard has served as a pastor and Dennis is part of his church’s worship team.
We determined not to let another 30 years go by before we connect again!
If you ever have the chance to connect with a long lost friend – do it! Or think of a friend you valued years ago and use Facebook or LinkenIn to look them. You may be due for a reunion!