August 26, 2011

It's a Small World After All


You go to several weddings in your life. You meet your friends’ cousins, co-workers and childhood best friends. You shake hundreds of hands, and there’s small talk until you settle on something in common. “Oh, you work in health care? So does my mom!”

At one wedding just when I was growing tired of the idle chit-chat, I was introduced to the bride’s friend from college. We started talking about the good old days, and of course sororities came up. She is an Alpha Phi from the Beta Alpha chapter at Illinois – our common ground had been established. Our faces lit up, and we gave each other the hand shake with a knowing look. Instantly, she rose above all of the other new acquaintances and became a friend. We spent the rest of the night reminiscing about social events and comparing notes on our philanthropy fundraisers.

I have not moved far from my alma mater, the University of Maryland, but Washington, DC, attracts people from all over the country. At cocktail parties or even riding the Metro, I’ll meet an Alpha Phi or see a girl in an APhi t-shirt and feel an immediate kinship.

Major life changes like new jobs and moving can be intimidating; you’re meeting several new people and some of your best friends are no longer conveniently nearby. Every so often though, you come upon someone who has a shared outlook, who you already know cherishes the same values and who knows the true meaning of sisterhood. You meet an Alpha Phi, and the world gets a little smaller.

Maggie McGuire (Delta Zeta-Maryland) currently resides in Chevy Chase, MD.

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