I am fortunate for those vibrant souls that color my life.   My circle is a small one and extremely spread out across the globe.   They have each contributed to my development as a friend, as a woman, as a mother, and as a global citizen.  I have them to thank for my widening my internal viewfinder and keeping me from becoming too one dimensional, too self centered, and too comfortable.   They have seen me at my worst, my best, and my flashing the crowd in the Hofbrau tent at Oktoberfest.  

This week I began to reflect on the kindred spirits that enter and leave our life.  Who we choose to invite into our little world of idiosyncrasies  is an interesting reflection.  Those that stay in our life through the decades are rare.  Many step in and out at different stages…teaching us, challenging us, and occasionally pissing us off.   Each acts as a mirror, reflecting back different facets of our personality.   Some of these mirrors are a little cracked, a little warped, and in need of a little Windex – but that’s what makes their point of view unique!

As I look back, I realize that not everyone is present for the long haul.  Friends leave our life for different reasons.  Some just fade into the background as years and distance intrude – a few reappear, many don’t.   Some you should let go and others you need to fight to keep.   Yet every encounter shapes us through our continuing evolution, regardless of the time spent together. 

These colorful souls that have a stamp on my spirit are numerous, and not all are still in my life.  Yet many taught me life’s important lessons!

Heidi – cheap white zinfindel stolen from your parent’s basement chased by Diet Pepsi is a shitty way to get drunk 

Elias –  Lebanese playboys eat a lot of sushi!  

Pete –  gave me the greatest gift of my life.  

Christiane – shows me a shining example of motherhood, sisterhood, and global compassion every time I see her – and sometimes when I don’t. 

Lyndsay – showed me its okay to go home and that friends can evolve from childhood.

Laura – dating your friend’s ex-boyfriend doesn’t have a statute of limitations – its never a good idea!

Katie – “The only Bush I trust is my own” bumper sticker will NEVER go old.   Feminism is beautiful.  As is her palpable love with Guy.  

Andy – “Go win this thing” … and the importance of hill repeats and speedwork.  

Tara – what a good friend really is….telling me straight and grounding me while encouraging me to keep flying.  Unconsciously bringing dragonfly’s into my life. 

Tony – tapping into my artistic heart while not stifling my blunt and sarcastic nature.  The encouragement behind the writing.  

Devon – the sunshine, the joy, my heart, my spirit embodied.  

Kate – take time for yourself…its okay and its necessary.

Lou – Family is sometimes the straw that breaks the camel’s back – but you’re always stronger than you think.

Becca – an intense fear of flying doesn’t mean you can’t travel the world.  

Sarah and Dave – a strong and solid love can endure the stages of life  – family,  respect, laughter, friendship, and joy conquers all!

Brent – Singlespeeds are the ONLY way to go.  

Jackie – life throws you A LOT of curveballs….and that won’t stop, so work on your batting skills!

Sean –  riding your bike home from the bars is sometimes just as dangerous as driving a car, especially when tram tracks are involved!

Loran –  “chase your dreams”

Terry – music and singing are part of life – at least in the Kutz family!

Zoe –  ‘Yes” is always the correct answer for a trip to the kebab stand! 

Brad and Stacy – the value of a holster and cowboy boots for your life love!

Larissa – sisterhood is not always smooth – especially with a decade between, but its worth it.

Will – my first biking lesson at age 7:   if you are riding a boys bike, don’t crash it into a tree and straddle the bar if you want children later in life.  OUCH.

Jane – the value of a good cup of tea (or five)

DT – graphs, data, polar heart rate monitors, powertaps, and LT threshold tests are not for me.

H – Beaver Liquors

Amy – female bonding isn’t easy

Gareth – all grudges can be forgiven over four bottles of Beaujolais 

Bridgette – mountain yogini extraordinaire and generous birthday wish giver!  

Steve – my first musical influence: Devo, “Whip It”, followed by a lifelong education on the Minneapolis music scene!

David – moving forward is key, as is transparency.   (and a shared love of baby carrots)


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