Nadine, one of my best friends in the world, lives in Cologne, which is so very near to Düsseldorf, which has proved to be incredibly convenient. On top of our close proximity, she has been singing in a show that has been playing at the Düsseldorf Theater, so we have gotten to see a lot of each other since I arrived here. We spent a quiet New Year's Eve together with her boyfriend, cooking a lovely dinner together and then lighting fireworks outside in the snow. We also spent my birthday together a few days later, thankfully sparing me from a lonely natal day. Over the past few weeks we have, like always, shared countless laughs and listened intently to each other's life issues, offering validation, support, and more laughs.
Today, we met at our favorite lunch place that we have lunched at many times over the past years – an old fire station that burned down twice, and then was converted into a restaurant. We discussed a variety of things ranging from music, retiring Lindoro, our futures, her upcoming projects, to our personal lives, laughing (as per usual) all along the way. Our meal was brief - she had to run home to teach a voice student and then finish packing for her trip to Spain tomorrow to rehearse fr an upcoming concert. By the time she gets back to Germany, I will have returned home to the States. At the end of our lunch, we parted ways near the main train station, momentarily sad that we didn't know when we would see each other next. We then made sure that one of our little traditions remained in place, and took a picture of ourselves – something we do every time we see each other. We hugged one more time, did some logical thinking, and trusted that we would see each other again before the year was out somehow. And with that, we waved goodbye to each other, and I, a little wistful, boarded my train back to Düsseldorf .