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Ann Poe…

Except to me she will always be Ann Carter. She was my best friend in high school; we were inseparable. I thought we were exactly the same person. We planned to go to college together. We planned to get a jeep and share it. But then I went to Georgia and she went to Charleston. After college, Ann came back to our hometown, but I never did.

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I was always a little jealous that Ann lived her whole life in the same place, because I moved 5 times, to 3 different countries, before I was 10. It turns out that my life of moving around, and her life of living in the same house for 18 years, made us pretty different people after-all.

Ann doesn’t like change. She lives in the same neighborhood she grew up in, with her husband and her, soon to be, two children. She has been teaching first grade in the same classroom for 8 years. Whereas, during those same 8 years, I have moved 7 times, had more than 7 jobs and have traveled to four countries.

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Ann asks me when I am going to settle down… I ask her when she is going to come and visit me, wherever it is I am living at the time.

We couldn’t be more different, but our friendship is still strong. And now it is fun to see Ann with her little Susie. And when I hear Susie call my name in her little Southern accent… I am still amazed by it all.

best friends and babies

Being back in the South, where I grew up, means visiting friends from my childhood… and their children. So I am also using them as models for my look into the American way of life for middle class families. Ann and Susie are my favorite models… and we go everywhere together. It is good practice for me.

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Ann and her husband Darren bought a house in the neighborhood that we grew up in. They wanted a safe place to raise their daughter Susie and their new one who is on the way.

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Spending the summer at the lake is mandatory in the South. Every good Southern family spends as many weekends as possible at the lake skiing, tubing and just driving around.

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