She is determined, endlessly curious, a seasoned botanist, a true woman of the West, has a photographic memory, and a true Christian and loving heart. She would also win the Hunger Games without blinking an eye.
Kaye met my mom at Utah State in Logan in the 70s. Their chance meeting is one of the many polished stories Kaye loves to tell over and over again. Fei was sitting in the front row of the class furiously trying to take notes while the professor only lectured in a low voice facing the board. At the end of class, Fei turned around with tears running down her face, muttering, "I no can do." Kaye offered to let her borrow her notes after each class and their friendship began.
Their college stories cover all the best-of topics that a newly immigrated FOB could learn from a true American: lime jello with bananas, how to celebrate Thanksgiving, learning to go to the university cheese factory to collect free cheese samples and then recruiting all the foreign Chinese students to do the same, demanding a copy of that "golden Mormon bible" from across the classroom, and surviving the cemetery as a shortcut without ancestor ghosts following them out (so we think).
Fei loves to ask questions and Kaye loves to give answers. Neither of them can ever stop talking, and sometimes that leaves both of them talking without anyone to listen to them, except me. The simultaneous monologue is not the kind that merits or asks for a response -- a scientific tour guide of all the names of the wildlife we're passing from Kaye, and commentary on how fascinating that baby trees can grow on the sides of rocks from Fei. They talk just as easily as most people breathe, or fart and then leave you to deal with it.
I've had almost two full weeks to spend with them this year, and I've nearly gone crazy from it. But at the same time, they are hilarious to observe and it's very precious to see how a friendship can continue to give 40 years later.
Kaye, we are lucky to benefit from your endless love, and District 13 proudly supports you in the Hunger Games. We know that you will return our victor without a doubt.