Need Some Non Fitness Advice


Over the years I've been on these forums I've marveled at the amazing insightful advice Catheletes have to offer on everything from parenting to summer reading. Well now I turn to you with a couple of things I need help with. The first should be fun, the second - not so much. So here goes. This summer I'll be visiting Milan, where I lived from the age of 15 to 33, after an absence of 18 years. I have not been very good a staying in touch with people, but since Facebook came to be I've reconnected with many friends who are on it. I'll be staying with two of them, a couple nights with each. So the first question is:

What should I get them as a gift?

And now the hard question.

I've completely lost contact with another friend. We we're very close from when we were both 15 until I came back to the states. I managed to stay in touch for about a year after I moved here. I know she's been through some really tough times (death of her boyfriend and her own health issues). I feel so bad about not staying in touch, but there is nothing I can do about that now. I really want to see her, but how do I approach her? I'm pretty sure her mother, who I also know very well, is still at the same address. Help me, Catheletes. What should I say?


Gabrielle -

How about something that you cannot buy in Milan? I don't know where in AZ you are, but what about something native American? Basketry, silver jewelry?

Second, I think you should contact your friend (or her mother). Often the years just melt away. If she doesn't want to see you, at least you will know. Some friendships endure decades of separation; maybe this is one of them.

Have a wonderful summer.:cool:

Debbie Russo


Oh, Milan sounds like so much fun! I definitely agree you should get them something unique to where you live. Maybe even a small painting or some pottery or even a basket of goodies... (I'm a big fan of baskets.)

As for the friend you've lost contact with, I think this happens to all women. I have re-established a couple of friendships over the past couple of years with friends with whom I had lost contact over a long period of time. What I did was send them a message on facebook or via email and the gist of what I said was, "I am so sorry that I lost touch with you. We were such great friends, and I am so sorry that we drifted apart. I hope we can stay in touch again. I miss you!" Each of my friends were receptive and we picked right up where we had left off. Good luck re-establishing your friendship. Good friends can pick up where they left off, and I'm sure you guys will do just that!

Have a fun trip to Milan!!! :)


I agree...I think your friends would love something from the States esp from where you live. As far as your other friend...we all know how life gets crazy and how easy it is to lose touch. I'm sure she will be thrilled to hear from you and it will be a great way for the two of you to reconnect. Just let her know how much you missed her and you are sorry you lost touch...I'm sure y'all will pick right back up where you left off. Have a great time in Milan!



I was thinking along the lines of some Southwest jewelry or pottery too. I think I'll stick to jewelry because Italian apartments are usually pretty small and I have no idea what would fit in with their decor.

I kind of already knew the answer to the second question. I'll just have to bite the bullet, send a snail mail letter, and hope for the best.

Thanks for your input!


I was thinking along the lines of some Southwest jewelry or pottery too. I think I'll stick to jewelry because Italian apartments are usually pretty small and I have no idea what would fit in with their decor.

I'm originally from Flagstaff and am now in Germany. I've brought back sand paintings, small kachina dolls, pottery and jewelery for people over the years. By far and away, the best received and easiest to transport has been turquoise jewelery.

A silver cross with turquoise embellishment for someone I know is religious and turquoise stud earrings set in silver filigree for someone who isn't, for example. You can also get beautiful, quality pieces inexpensively there. Here, anything like that is much, much more expensive and hard to find.


Well, I'm on my way to Italy. I'm bringing jewelry as gifts and some Arizonan wine! There are actually a couple of AZ wines that are very good and it's the last thing anyone would expect from here.

As for my friend, I bit the bullet and called. Once her mom figured out who was on the phone she started to cry, I was tearing up too. I'm so glad I called. They thought I was mad at them, I thought she was mad at me. When my friend came to the phone it really was as if no time had passed. She's home sick with a broken rib so I'll be spending most of my time just hanging out with her at her place.

Thanks for all the advice.

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