Memories are funny things.
I suppose that there is someone like her in every teenage boy's life. The gorgeous, unattainable girl. Not someone to fall in love with... just someone to admire.
For me, that was Patti. With all due respect to some who may be reading this, she was the most beautiful girl I knew in high school. We were friends, and only friends. Oh, I remember seeing a movie together here and there, usually in groups with other people, but there was never any hint of romance. She lived close to me, and I would ride my bike by her house, hoping she would notice and invite me to come in. She never did. I hope that is because she never saw me riding by.
We did have some close times. She shared important things with me, and we spent many good moments together. She made my life better in what was for all of us a confusing time.
Like many adolescent relationships, ours grew apart after high school. We saw each other occasionally, and then less and less. I believe the last time I saw her in person was about twenty years ago. Through the magic of Facebook, we reconnected, albeit not with any degree of closeness.
Still, memories are funny things, and Patti lives on in my memory as one of those truly special friends from way back.
News of Patti came to me over the last few weeks, and that news was terrible. Disease, suffering, hospitals.
Yesterday, Patti left us. Heaven has gained another angel.
But she was always an angel to me.