I first met Mia Sara Moreno when I was six years old and she was five. Both of our parents were teachers at the same elementary school, so they thought it would be a great idea for their kids to hang out together. Mia’s mom brought Mia to my mom’s kinder classroom before the school year started in order to acquaint her with my sister and me ahead of time. Mia was shy at first, hiding behind her mother, but eventually, she was coaxed into playing with some building blocks with us.
Mia, my sister, and I became a trio that day.
We all had similar interests (Lord of the Rings nuts, the three of us), and if we could, we would spend hours together. We made up games of tag that involved throwing footballs at each other. We pretended to be wolves roaming Middle-Earth. We slept over at each others’ houses and watched scary movies. We picked oranges from Mia’s grandparents’ tree.
Alya (my sister) was the leader. Mia and I would follow her anywhere, while also trying to caution her against bad ideas. We called ourselves the Wright Brothers Organization. (Yes, we were aware that there were only two famous, flying Wright Brothers, but we meant it more in the spirit of adventure.)
To this day, there is no one who is more comforting or relaxing as a friend to me, than Mia.
Mia is simultaneously the gentlest person I know and the most stubborn. She cares deeply about the people she is close to, almost to the point where she excuses any shortcomings they might have. (Loyal is an understatement when it comes to describing the kind of friend she is.) At the same time, she holds on to her ideals of fairness with an iron grip.
Alya, Mia, and I once categorized the strength of our respective levels of determination. Alya’s was rubber, elastic yet firm. Mia’s was steel. Mine was Play-Doh.
Mia is quiet when you first meet her, but a natural enthusiasm for her interests resides in her heart, and if you ignite it, she rises to the conversation like a flame. Her laugh is infectious. I’ve never heard her fake-laugh. It’s always a genuine, hearty chuckle.
Mia is an avid reader. She’s the only person I truly trust to lend one of my books to. She would protect it to the point of not even letting it get dusty. She never leaves her house without having a book on her; she carries one with her at all times.
You will never meet someone as logical or as reasonable as Mia. I think horror movies actively annoy her (bad decisions get under her skin). We once spent hours talking about how Anakin Skywalker is an idiot, and then we discussed all the ways he could have proceeded to solve his problems in Revenge of the Sith without ending up as Darth Vader.
When we play Dungeons & Dragons, she never lets loose with a goofy character. She always creates these sedate, practical characters. This ends badly for her since everyone else in our D&D group is an utter goofball when it comes to making a character (including me). Mia’s character always has to be the level-headed one who has to get the rest of us out of trouble.
It’s not often that a childhood friend remains in your life for so long, and I never wish to forget to appreciate Mia for being who she is. One of my greatest joys in life is to share a coffee with her in the early hours of the day while playing a friendly game of Scrabble, some original Star Trek episodes playing in the background.
Not only is she a good friend, she’s a good person. She’s one of the best persons I know.
She’s my mellon.