That's me on the left. Back when I was Kay.

(Don't mind the enormous glasses. It was the late 1980s. Sally Jesse was setting the trends.)

The other little girl is Lara.

We were best friends. If you couldn't tell.

This was taken the summer before the 4th grade, which was, aside from the traumas of learning long division, a golden year.

Thanks in large part to Lara.

We wrote mystery novels, played detective a la Nancy Drew, and established elaborate scenarios in which we were searching for treasure while being chased my cannibals.

We were obsessed with The Princess Bride. One of the largest bruises of my life was obtained during a swordfighting battle with Lara. I backed up into her purple Barbie Dream House.

Drop. Your. Sword.

At the end of the 4th grade, Lara and her family moved to the suburbs of Chicago. I was devastated.

I visited Lara twice, flying on a plane all by myself. (Do I have cool parents or what?) Most of my memories of Chicago are from those trips. We hit all the big kid-friendly spots: the Field Museum, the aquarium, the lakefront ferry tour.

The zoo. I felt like I had been deposited in a memory the first time we went to the Brookfield Zoo.

Lara and I lost touch sometime in high school. But I tracked her down and emailed her while Juliette was napping this morning.

Hey. I live twenty miles away now. Any chance we're still kindred spirits, after all this time?

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