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For Sabina


Plaid pale pants Puffy black jacket Short stylish black hair

(Shorter than I remember) Those deepset black eyes

as bright and piercingly intelligent As they were 29 years ago.

(Were they moist off and on

When we started talking After a long, warm hug?

So much has happened

Over these long years.

Where to begin?) From the sofa at Park Central We rose Cut across Yerba Buena Lane over to Amber.

“Will you be done by 7?” the male host asked, a little harried.

We acquiesce. And a few minutes later the female host,

“You will be done by 6:45, right?” “No!” I exclaim, outraged and incredulous.

“We said 7! Chasing us out before we even sit down?!” The Amber menu did not disappoint.

Palak with amchur Bhindi jaipuri Khoomb kofta Paratha, rice We fast forward, pause, rewind

Talk about our children Friends from Smith Life partners

Family gained

Family lost Work The joys of the consulting life Flashback to Smith Broccoli! Previously unseen vegetable Uncut, steamed whole, Placed in chafing dishes in the dining hall Heart sinking at the sight My God, they eat trees here.

Horror and panic: What will I eat? And another moment

PED XING Painted on the road. Eliciting puzzled musings. What language is that? Are there many Chinese people here? And later the sheepish realization Pedestrian crossing. 29 years later How easy to resume A conversation With my first friend at Smith Sabina. My heart is full, she said

As we embraced and said goodbye.

Let’s not wait another 30 years. My heart was full too.

The warmth of friendship a cocoon

on the cold drive back home.

(Written on 2/12017)

Sabina is a leadership coach for CEOs and executives. Read about her work here, and watch her incredibly moving TEDx talk.

#friend #SmithCollege #AmberIndia #SabinaNawaz #TEDx