Monday, April 13, 2009

Kati, where are you?

Several years ago I was flying from Atlanta to Lansing and I struck up a conversation with the young lady sitting next to me. Turns out she was from Germany and was flying to Lansing to study for a semester at Michigan State. We chatted for a while (her English was impeccable). As we were landing she asked me about the bus system around the college; I had to say I knew nothing about it, but knew lots of the students used bikes to get around. She said she couldn’t exactly bring hers from Germany, so she would have to try to find one for the semester.

Knowing she’d think me crazy, but feeling prompted to offer, I gave her my phone number and said we had an extra bike she was welcomed to use. She hesitated to take the piece of paper with my contact info, but eventually did and I figured I would never hear from her again.

A few days later she called, asked if I had been serious and if so, would love to borrow our bike. I was thrilled! Sean helped me get it all cleaned up, then we delivered it to her. She was beyond thankful.

During her semester here we talked on the phone occasionally, Rebecca, Amy and I took her to dinner and at the end of her time in the States she invited our whole family to her going-away party. What started as a crazy conversation at 30,000 feet ended in friendship that, thanks to technology, has continued via email.

Until now. My emails to her keep getting bounced back and I’m afraid she’ll think I haven’t tried to reply to her latest note. She mentioned she occasionally visits my little corner of the internet; I figured this was as good a shot as any to say, “Hi, Kati! My emails aren’t getting through! And Rebecca says hi.”

Wish I knew how to say that in German…