Today is my pal Paul’s 83rd birthday. I want to wish him a Happy Birthday publicly here on my blog and to say I hope he has many more years of happiness there in his adopted home in Berlin.
Our friendship began when we were fellow members of an online writers’ group back in the Bulletin Board System days in the early 1990’s, even before the World Wide Web was invented. And it has continued during the ensuing almost 15 years through the regular exchange of emails, occasional face-to-face visits, and, since December of 2004, almost daily Skype calls.
Once when I sent him on a trip to New York, thanks to an abundance of frequent flyer points I had available, I told him we’d just refer to him as my “Uncle Paul” (because of my mistaken belief at the time that I could only share those points with members of my family). I’ve heard it said that “Friends are the family you choose.” So in a very real sense, he has become an adopted member of my family.
Here are a few of my favorite pictures of him. Click on each image to display a larger version.