Miles don't keep Marian Sanborn and Theresa Chidester apart
When Marian Sanborn walked into Calico Jack's Bar and Grill in the Orlando area to meet her friend, Susan, she never suspected that the woman Susan introduced her to would - in no time at all - become her best friend. Yet in the five years that have passed since that fateful night, the friendship between Sanborn and Theresa Chidester has flourished, despite life-changing events like Sanborn's marriage and move to the Seattle area.
Shortly after their first meeting, Chidester says, "I was just sitting around the house with absolutely nothing to do, and decided to invite her to go to a movie with me." They saw The Craft, which Sanborn quips "was just the beginning of our movie ritual." Adds Chidester, "I knew we'd click, and soon we were stuck together like glue."
Thus began their Tuesday evening pastime of what Sanborn terms "Chinese drive-by fooding." After picking up dinner at a Chinese restaurant with a drive-through, the friends would watch a video and chat about "the usual stuff - clothes, movies, music and men," laughs Sanborn.
As their friendship evolved, each came to appreciate the special qualities that the other had to offer. Chidester, 24, reveals that her friend - who she calls "Boo Boo" - "has taught me loads of 'life lessons.'" She says, "Marian taught me the philosophy that if someone doesn't like you, forget it. The next person will appreciate you."
Sanborn, 31, who calls Chidester "TDawg," values her friend's honesty. "She will definitely tell me when I'm being full of myself and when I need to lighten up." Sanborn also appreciates Chidester's sense of style. "She's a bit more trendy than I am - she had to pull me from the '80s kicking and screaming," Sanborn laughs.
The two friends have also experienced some other kicks together. "To me," Chidester declares, "Marian just defines wild and wacky." When asked for an example, Chidester pauses, then recalls, "I suppose the day that Marian took me to get my belly button pierced could be considered kind of crazy. She laughed at me - especially when I screamed because it hurt so bad."
Crazy times aside, Sanborn, a web developer and plus-size model, and Chidester, a technical assistant for a telephone company, have also shared some major life changes. According to Sanborn, it was Chidester who helped her make a decision between two boyfriends, one of whom is now her husband. "She supported my move out to Seattle to be with my husband, even though I know it was hard for her to let go." Chidester, who is godmother to Sanborn's one-year-old daughter, says "the fact that we managed to plan a wedding over the computer brought us closer together."
Although her 1997 move to the West Coast meant the two friends were separated by over 3,000 miles, Sanborn exclaims, "we are still best friends, regardless of distance." They still frequent online chat rooms, where they "meet" several times a week. "The Internet has been a godsend to my long distance telephone bill," chuckles Chidester. In addition, the friends visit each other at least three times a year. Sanborn says, "Before I moved and every time we visit we go dancing, shooting pool, watching movie rentals and babbling about the men in our lives."
While the two friends share similar values, beliefs and interests, Sanborn says "Because we view the world around us very differently, it allows us to merge those views into workable attributes for us both." Chidester seconds that emotion, saying, "I've never had a friendship that can be so honest. Marian can tell me I'm acting up, but no matter what, she's still my best Boo."