Overseas Pen Pal Hug

Sometimes the stories will be my own.

One of my most memorable hugs came from someone I technically just met.

Do you remember getting pen pals in grade school? If not, these were names of kids from the same grade as yours in other schools. You got to send them (snail mail) letters and they would do the same in return. Well, in 5th grade our class was fortunate enough to be pen pals with students from England. My pen pal and I connected immediately. Not only did we write letters through 5th grade, we continued writing letters for years. We became great friends. As I graduated high school, I knew I wanted to do some traveling. What better way to travel than with someone overseas you already know?! I wanted to surprise her, so I contacted her Mom and coordinated the trip.

Now, this was my first time on a plane. Going overseas. For two weeks. To say I was nervous would be an understatement but it was completely overshadowed by my excitement to finally meet my pen pal. As I got off the plane I knew she would figure it was me she had come to pick up seeing as how I traveled on American Airlines. And, I was right. As I walked down the short hallway toward the waiting crowd I saw her with her family. We both screamed that high pitch scream only teenage girls seem capable of. I ran to her and we squeezed each other like long lost friends even though technically we had just met. Although, not really, but kind of. We stayed that way for a few minutes, jumping up and down and not letting go. I think even a few tears may have been shed. I spent the next two glorious weeks seeing London through the eyes of a native. We may lose touch periodically but I am happy to say that we are still friends and keep in touch almost 30 years later.

Please accept this blog as my virtual hug to you.


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