If you are like me you have lived in many places, had many careers along the way, and met many people over the course of your life, and to me it is always so wonderful when I am able to re-connect with some of those people that for some reason or other over the years I have lost touch with. It is in a way like what the "Bucket List Movie" which is so great as it does to make us stop to think about the things we want to do in our lives. If you have not seen the movie I suggest you do as it is great. But also I think another version of it all is, where have all the people gone that were a part of our lives on the way to where we are now. Many of these people have helped to shape the person we are today, and because of LIFE 101 and being busy, situation changes in our own lives, we sometimes have lost touch with those people.. Just the other day I had a great surprise, I answered my phone and this person said to me "this is a voice from your past do you know who it is"? Well those of you that know me know that I know thousands of people, as I am known as the master connector, the queen of networking etc., and my past has taken me from Hawaii, to Nebraska, to Virginia, to Texas, than back to VA, New Jersey, New York, back to VA , Northern, CA and then to Southern, CA where I now live and along the way I have been blessed, as thousands and thousands of wonderful people just like you have been a part of my life. When I was in corporate America in top positions many great people worked for me, and others I have met since I became an entrepreneur and owner of my own business and as the NAFE Western & Mid Atlantic Regional Coordinator. So you can see why sometimes it is not that easy for me to quickly identify the WHO. Anyway, he said my name is John from New York and then I immediately knew it was John DiPrima (the Italian Kid) who worked for me in the 80"s when I was with the State Insurance Department Liquidation Bureau in New York City. I was so thrilled to hear from him, and we shared information about many of the people I knew then, and who he was still in contact with since he has lived in New York his whole life. I can't tell you what a wonderful uplifting experience to hear from a voice from my past, especially New York, as I had some pretty great times and experiences in New York. Although John worked for me for five years until I left to go to Washington and did an outstanding job, I always thought of him as my second son and he became a part of my family as well, and I think he always also felt that he was a part of our family as well. It was great to hear about him, his wife and his family. He just retired from the Probation Department in New York and still active in many volunteer activities and also is doing movie parts in New York, which I could see him doing as he is such a great person. Talking with him brought back so many great memories of my five years in New York, and what was so remarkable was that he came into my mind a few days before. I remember my mind thinking one day, I wonder what John DiPrima is doing these days and wham a few days later there he was on the phone. It is proof that the mind is a powerful source and if we think it, then it will happen. I had stayed in touch with John when I moved to VA to take on a top job at GSA, and in fact invited him to VA to come to the Inaugural Balls when I worked as a Vice Chair for the Reagan/Bush Inaugural in Washington, and he and my friends son who today is an Admiral in the Navy, both took some gals from Georgetown University to the balls and had a great time. What was funny was that at that time most of John's family in New York were very big in the Democratic party and many are still today as is John. and as you know Reagan was a Republican. But to John it was an opportunity of a lifetime to go to the Inaugural events as I had a pass that got them into everything. After our phone talk he sent me an email with lots of great stuff about people we know, his wife and family and more. I loved all the catch up news but what touched me so much was how he started the note to me and that I thought I would love to share with you: "Hey Boss, It's the Italian Kid. It was soooooo great speaking with you today. I can't tell you how many times I have thought about you over the years. I do not know what took me so long to contact you. I guess i have been brain dead until I retired and realized what things are really important to me. Hearing your voice again today made me really happy and relieved you were still alive and doing fantastic as I knew you would be. I will never forget how lucky I was to have a boss and friend as you. I cannot convey how happy I am that I spoke with you. I will never forget how nice you were to me and took me in as one of your own. You were my mentor and taught me many things that affects my life today". Wow, to totally hear that , how when you reach out to make a difference it could still be impacting those peoples lives today. What he said to me in the email was a gift that no money can buy. I was so touched to know that I had made a difference, as that is truly my passion and purpose in life to make a difference , and I try everyday of my life to be there for others. Needless to say it made my day and already he is connecting me with others that worked with me or that I knew from New York era which was in the early 80's as from New York I went to DC where I worked for five years before coming to CA and over the years I have been able to connect with DC friends that worked with me at GSA. I was on such a high from the call that on the same day in the evening I was on the way to run the SOC For You.NAFE meeting and had a flat tire and knew I did not have time to call Triple A, as at that time of night they would have taken 45 minutes and I knew I had to be at my SOCFY /NAFE Meeting as we had a great group coming together so did not want to be late as I was running the meeting. So I did not stress and Fannie Green and I found some Hispanic youths at a store on Highway 74 and they were so kind to jack up the car and put the donut tire on , and off we went to the meeting over the Ortega Highway and arrived on time and I was not even stressed about the flat tire. So many good things happen in our lives for us all, and we just have to hold on to those moments so when we are hit with bad things they do not affect us. It is sort of what I say all the time "read the news for opportunities as we cannot change the news". And what is funny about that comment is that I was in a clients office yesterday, and picked up a National Geographic Magazine opened it to just a random page and found him a connection that was perfect to connect with for his business. Then I went to a tire place and was reading some local papers and found him 4 more connections of perfect people for his company, he was blown away, so reading the news for opportunities works, many I have taught that strategy to swear by it and tell me it has changed their lives so you start doing it and see what happens for you. See I read everything for opportunities not news, so try it as it works, remember we cannot change the news but we can find the opportunities. This strategy will help to keep you in a positive mode as well. Since this happened this week all of a sudden I find myself thinking how fantastic it would be for me to reach out and try to find many of those people I have lost touch with and see what they are doing, I have address books from years ago so will start to GOOGLE those names and see where it takes me. I am sure on an exciting new journey. That will be my bucket list to find all the wonderful people I have known in my life and reconnect with them. It will be an interesting experience and with the Internet, the search is so much easier. What also is amazing from the call was that John is connected with some people that one of my clients has been wanting to meet in NY, and one of them has turned out to be John's best friend, so here comes in that POWER is in the ASKING part. My client was blown away to know that this person could make a phone call to make something happen that he had been working on years and not accomplished. Remember we all know people, so if people let us know who they need to meet one of us has that connection. It is truly all about SHOWING UP in person and on line, remember that, and also that the POWER is in the ASKING. Life is so fantastic and the journeys we all take are suppose to happen, and each curve of the way has made us the person we are today. Yes times for all are a little more challenging these days, but now more than ever is when we need those wonderful friends in our life, who knows where the journey will take us. I know I am excited about my journey I still have to take.I am 73 years old and I still have lots of things I want to do in my life, lots of people to mentor, and lots of people to meet , and that is so exciting to me and is what keeps me so positive and on purpose with my life. Everyday I am grateful for the new people I meet, for the wonderful friends like you that I know and for the people I still have to meet, and I know that together, sharing our knowledge and being there for each other with heart is what is going to help us get through these tough times. Remember they don't have to be tough times they can be great opportunities for us all. It's important to SHOW UP at your NAFE and For You meetings, as those people are heart people that you need in your life and people have told me they always go home feeling so glad that they did SHOW UP. Now is not the time to hibernate which is easy to do when times get a little tough its the time to put yourself out there, connect with friends, family and to make new friends as well. So who is it in your life played a great role , or was a good friend or employee that you have lost touch with, perhaps now would be a great time to see if you can find them, I will tell you I find reconnecting with those people is truly a great thing. So as you go on your journey of life cherish the friends you have had in the past as well as now, and also the friends you will meet along the way. I know friendships to me are the most important thing in my life. I am still close friends with my best friend from Hawaii Gail Martin . She and I were friends in Hawaii, she was 11 and I was 12,she now lives in Buena Park, CA. Or Fannie Green who I met when I moved to CA 20 years ago, June Davidson, Dr Sharron Stroud who I also met soon after I moved to CA., Carol Evans and Betty Spence from NAFE and so many others that are such a part of my life, people like you.. My friendships with so many others span over 60 years. and come from all the places my path in life has taken me. But remember friendship is a two way street, you also have to work at it , and all have to make an effort to stay in touch. Remember no one ever saw on a tombstone "I wish I had worked harder", so have fun cherish your family and friends, they are the best gift you can give yourself. Take care my wonderful friends of NAFE and may your life's journeys be as great as mine have been or even better. Remember I am always here for you as Together we can do more. If you have had a great reconnect story share it with me and I will include it on my blog at http://blog.rmotter.com.