On February 23, at Village Books, Lynden, I read an excerpt of an essay that was published in the Whatcom READS anthology. I told my true story of recently rediscovering three letters from a special friend I knew 45 years earlier when we worked in Africa. After writing to the address on my envelope, I miraculously located Sami’s family and his wife in Lebanon just a few months ago. I discovered he had passed away 21 years earlier. He left a legacy of five wonderful children. All have Arabic names except the his first born child, a girl. They named her Susan and they call her Susie the endearing name he called me in Liberia. Sami’s son, calls me “family” and has invited me to visit. I have my plane ticket for a trip to Ain Enoub, Lebanon in September 2020. I am honored and blessed to have discovered my new family.
45 years ago, in a country far from my home, a baby girl was named Susan. There are reasons for keeping some old treasured items. Sami’s letters are back in their safe place. They remain priceless.