This is my first birthday since Nicole and I became friends that I won’t phone her up at 552 0872 and offer my birthday wishes. This is the first year since Nicole and I became friends that I will not hear her wish her young Aries friend Happy Birthday as well. Although we were decades apart Nicole and I would revel in sharing birthdays separated by mere hours, divided by a date and subsequently astrological signs! She would tease me about how Pieces was the older and wiser sign and Aries was the younger and obviously less wiser of the two. I would smile and understand, regardless of whether it had to do with signs or not, the truth in her statement.

I got a bit sad recently thinking that Nicole never got to meet Joewell in person. We were so close in our scheduling but just missed. It was this thought I was pondering earlier today when I had the opportunity to share with several other of Nicole’s friends up at the top of Nevada Street where we were laying her ashes to rest. It was this thought I was pondering, standing in a circle around her future gravesite when I glanced towards the city behind me and notice Lara’s barn. I saw the arena, I saw the paddocks and I saw them clearly and smiled realizing that although Nicole would not meet Joewell in person (as silly and insignifant as this might see to some) that her ashes were being laid to rest in a spot on the hill where, over the next few weeks or month a view of Joewell in turnout would be clear. So… on some level they would be close for a period of time. It was this realization that made me smile through my tears knowing that she would literally be looking down upon me while I rode and that in turn she would always be looking down upon me. It was then, I was struck with fear! Holy cow! I better keep my act together or else Nicole little fiesty spirit will grab my arm and her little voice in my head will say “stop it. stop it. stop it. you need to listen to me.” and she’ll proceed to give me advice. It won’t, of course, be the same but I know I have the tools from her teachings that will guide me to take better decisions in my life.

Happy Birthday Love! I will miss you and not forget you!