“In my life, I had two Mothers, Macedonia who gave me birth and America who adopted me.” ~ Stoyan Christowe
Have you ever made friends with someone who is a stranger from a strange land, yet they reverse the role and make you, the American, feel more at home?
Two and a half years ago, I moved from my 35 year Vermont residence to the West. I came to this town, Steamboat Springs, Colorado, site unseen and had no idea what to expect. Within a few months time, I met a woman, about my age from Macedonia. Heretofore I had never known a soul from Macedonia, and was not even sure where the on the map the country lies.
Two years into our friendship, my friend told me a story of an immigrant orphan from Macedonia, Stoyan Christowe, who arrived in 1897 in my “adopted home” state of Vermont. He started a new life and eventually became a Vermont State Senator, journalist and author. http://bit.ly/n94kTO . He lived out the rest of his life in America and during that time, he six published books including “This is My Country.”
A film is currently being produced about the life of Stoyan Christowe by the Macedonian Arts Council. http://bit.ly/pPj1SC. I look forward to seeing this film and I hope it well captures the feeling that Mr. Christowe expressed about his native land and his adopted country.
Today, I celebrate my Macedonian friend’s birthday. She made such a positive difference in my life. She helped me to assimilate into a new community nearly effortlessly. I can think of no better way to say Happy Birthday to her than to tell her how deeply grateful I am for her kindness and her help.
After many years of living in the U.S., she and her family have returned to her Motherland. Although the distance between us is now great, I can not help but feel our two countries of the United States and Macedonia, have grown just a little bit closer by the fulfilling friendship and bond my friend and I have formed. We hope to continue our friendship for many years to come.
Happy Birthday, Vesna!