Saturday, July 22, 2017

FRIENDS with Tomatoes

Friend: (n) person attached to another by a personal regard*

When I was 12, I met my friend Sally.  We formed an immediate and lasting bond.
There is no doubt we are attached to each other by true and lasting regard for one another*.
We meet at our church, Tabernacle Baptist.  Ironically the year we were in 7th grade, Hugh Morson,  the Junior high school we were to attend was too crowded.  Tabernacle was across the street from the junior high school.  Back in the early 1960's junior high was divided into a science and math block
 and  literature and English block. There was one teacher for each block.
After lunch each day, the teachers switched students. 
 The powers that be made some type of arrangement with the church to house two such blocks of students.  Our school classroom was in the exact section of the church that our Sunday School class was located.  Sally and I got a kick out of telling everyone we went to church six days a week.
The students housed in those two rooms of the church formed quite a tight bond.
The only time we went to the actual  school was for lunch everyday,
P.E. class and Music Appreciation which met 2 days a week.
In January of 1962 W. G. Enloe High School was completed near my home. It was the 
first school built out in that area for grades 7-12th. I was very sad to learn I 
would be transferred to Enloe.  However, since Sally and I went to the same church we remained very close.  We attended rival high schools but that didn't matter we were still friends.
After high school graduation, Sally attended Appalachian State University, which was located in Boone,NC about 4 hours from home.  We teased about the fact that she was gonna meet some mountain guy and never come back to Raleigh.  She assured me she would not.  
THANK goodness she found a mountaineer aka Gary won her heart.  

Sally and her husband Gary July 19, 2017
Sally and I have a lot of history together and made so many memories growing up.
We spent almost every Friday night together. When she came to my house
we loved watching Dr. Ben Casey on tv.
I am one of two childhood friends who knew her parents and she is one of two childhood friends who knew mine. Her parents were about 10 years older than my parents.  Sally had an older brother who loved entertaining Sally's friends. I loved going over there and hearing her dad tell stories and eating her mom's delicious meals.  Sally has followed in her mom's culinary footsteps.
She always prepares the best meals for us and usually surprises us with a new dish each year.
Her brother loved having a 'fresh' audience aka me to practice his craziness.   Sally and I completed each other's youth. 
She and Gary got teaching positions at schools in Yadkin Co. She never came back to live where she grew up.We raised our children together through real snail mail letters.  We wrote each other about twice a month back then. 
About 8 years ago we started visiting Sally and Gary every summer.
Our husbands only knew each other casually at the time of our first visit in 2009.
I am thrilled to say the men have become very good friends too.
We have continued to make so many fun memories....our husbands
just shake their heads and laugh at us each time we say
"remember when........"!!  
Gary has a small vineyard, he makes his own wine and sales grapes each fall to
the public.  Sally fondly calls, them 'grape nuts'!  
Sally and Gary's daughter and her family live here.  They often come down
to babysit the grands which gives us extra opportunities to visit during the year.

Bryan and I July 19, 2017
 This year was the first time over the last 8 that we have arrived during tomato harvesting time!!!!
I must say Gary has a green thumb for growing red delicious tomatoes.......
AND he gave us 10 ready to eat ones on Friday July 20th.
 As soon as we unpacked yesterday we had a fresh tomato sandwich.
Tonight we have having hamburgers with fresh tomatoes.  We will
continue to stuff them in our faces trying not to think about the fact that soon we will have none.

Last week I read this quote:  
Life is short, spend it with those who make you laugh
today I add the below to the quote
......and give you tomatoes.

Every time we are together we talk so much we get hoarse and we laugh so much our faces hurt!!! We are already talking about tentative plans for next year. 

Friends are family you pick.
Nurture the friendships like a beloved tomato vine. They will grow and blossom more and more each year.

Thanks for stopping by today.  For sure my mind's eye is full of memories today of times gone by but never forgotten.  Those times contributed to who I am today.


  1. Sounds like you two have a real, loving bond! And the tomatoes don't hurt either...

  2. wow on the tomatoes and I would do exactly what you are doing, mater sandwich and burgers. yum yum. I have a friend I met in 9th grade, she became my best friend and we stay in touch daily through the computer... she lives in Savannah and a lot of your story brought back memories of us together. we met in Jr high in 1959

  3. How wonderful that your friendship has lasted all these years!!

  4. It's wonderful to have forever friends like that! Mom had a tomato sandwich Friday night for her dinner and you should have heard all of the happy noises that she was making while eating it☺

  5. New friends are great, but old friends, the one's who will remember your parents and family and those formative early years, are valuable beyond measure. Last night I went to see the film 'Dunkirk' and, for reasons too complicated to explain in a comment, this brought back powerful memories of my beloved Uncle Jack (dad's older brother). I have only only friend now who met Uncle Jack and how I have been longing to talk to her about him.
    Cheers, Gail.

  6. Friends like that are sometimes closer to us than our family is - you can tell a friend things you can't always tell family members! Those tomatoes look divine - and it sounds like you four make NEW memories every year while enjoying all the old memories. Glad you had fun!

    Love, Pam

  7. It is wonderful that you have kept this friendship for so long.
    Truly agree that friends are the family we pick!

  8. Love the story. How amazing to have a life long friend like Sally. A nice bonus that your husbands are great friends now too.

  9. Love that quote! Those are the best looking tomatoes I have ever seen! How nice that you are still close friends. It is a special thing to have a friend who knew you through so much of your life like that!

    Your Pals,

    Murphy & Stanley


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