I have been in Ecuador for 2 months now! I have met so many new people, explored some crazy new places, tried new foods, made great friends, and I have been trying to blog about it consistently. Today though, I am feeling sentimental so I decided to write a tribute post to all the people back home who have a special place in my heart.
MY COLLEGE GIRL FRIENDS
These were the newest additions to my life, but you guys are just as much family as the friends I grew up with. Whether we were hatching plans to tape dildos to statues on campus, eating hungover Saturday breakfasts, experimenting with veganism, failing at making fondue, traveling to Europe or Voodoo Fest, watching Natalie pee, helping Kelly plan her wedding, teasing Vanessa about being an alien, laying around in bed all day with Nicole like an old married couple, we always could be weird selves and have so much fun together.
MY HOME GIRL FRIENDS
We grew up together! Nina, you taught me how to use a tampon and I will never forget it. Chelsea and Marpessa shared a wonderful summer in Europe with me, my first time abroad. Hannah, you are the most honest person I know, and therefore one of my favorite people to talk to about any issues I have in my life, so, thanks for being my therapist more than once. Sarah, you were pretty much the closest person I had growing up and I still feel a sense of home when I am around you, no matter how long we go without seeing each other. You guys have all turned out to be such amazing people and I love that my friends are all going to change the world some day in their own quirky, passionate ways.
MY HOME DAWGS
You boys have been keeping me grounded since middle school. I’m so glad you all moved to Tallahassee a few years ago so I got to share my last few years there with you. Thank you for always being down for a spontaneous hang out session, Fermentation lounge beer, Trailer Park Boys marathon, Sunday brunch, dress up dinner party. I miss you guys every day, seriously.
MY GUATEMALA FRIENDS
I did something stupid this summer. I went to a foreign country with no plans, no income, no friends, no place to live, and somehow ended up a part of the coolest, nicest, most giving group of people ever! Luke and Ray took me right into their apartment, as did Megan and then Dan later in the summer (oh the life of a couchsurfer). Andrea and I bonded over drinks one night bitching about romance and I knew I had found my place in Guatemala. You guys are the most spontaneous, adventurous, ridiculous people I have ever met and I love you all for it.
Melissa, Joe, Julie, you guys were the reason I would get excited to go to Cincinnati every year. It’s been sad knowing that you are all going through these big life changes (weddings, grad school!) and I am so far away and don’t get to share a part of it. I will always be up for a game of Dream Phone when I visit, and I will never get sick of watching movies in the basement, or running through the snow in our bathing suits to get to the hot tub. Joe, someday we will meet in Spain or Latin America and combine our awesome Day forces.
MY OLD LADIES
They won’t see this, but my Nanny, Aunt Stella, and Aunt Edith are such a positive group in my life. They were always supportive and so obviously proud of me. Over the years, they have never failed to give me a coca cola and ham sandwich the second I walk in the door, and yell at me if I forget to kiss one of them. They are crude and vulgar sometimes, but that’s part of why I love them! Who else has a grandma that will shout about how, “that Bush is a fucking dickhead!!!”
We were a family of 4 growing up, but I have had 2 amazing additions to my family recently. My mom, dad, and brother were always there for me, and I am happy to say that Anne and Conor feel like they have been there all along. I can’t wait to spend more Christmases with them and make more memories, making up for lost time. I know my mom and I will see more of the world together someday, having traveled in Peru, Greece, and Guatemala together, and I’m still crossing my fingers that my Dad and I will get to go to Ireland together someday and experience our heritage.
Oh where to begin?! Hercules Fluffy Day. I have loved you from the moment you appeared in my living room one fateful Christmas Eve fourteen years ago and I will continue to love you the crustier and older and grosser you get. You have been the most loyal and angry dog ever, defending me from all competition (boys) over the years. I know you bite people a lot, but you just do it to protect me, so its ok. Sometimes you stare into space and bark like you are looking at a ghost and it is creepy. I can’t take you in public because you are a mean dog, but that just means there’s more Hercules for me. All of my best afternoons are spent curled up on the couch with you watching America’s Next Top Model reruns (I know you wanted Naima to win just as much as me!). You have been fat, and skinny, and fat, and skinny, and I love you all the same. Keep on defending our house from squirrels and strangers.