Dear Giulia, Dear Dennis,
I think I might be one of your youngest friends here today. And I’m not talking about age, because unfortunately, as you can see, I am already 22 years old … ;) I am talking about our age measured in years of friendship.
A number that doesn't really matter all that much, because Dennis and Giulia didn’t need a lot of years passing by to conquer my heart.
Four years ago I left for a strategy-getaway in Tuscany, and I was convinced it was bound to be the most boring week of my life.
Still, people managed to persuade me to go. Apparently, some high up the food chain, big and important strategy dude from RGA was coming ‘and it will be good for your international network’, they said.
That big important strategy dude was the one and only Dennis Claus. Dennis taught me a lot those 3 days. I never thought a Hello Kitty story would be of exceptional value to me and the C-level community in Belgium…
But during the post-hello-kitty-years that followed, Dennis became my best friend. A friend whom I can trust with anything. A friend who accepts me and my flaws, throughout my ups and downs. Throughout my even bigger hangovers and throughout the help-I-need-some-advice-nights. A friend, even if I don’t pick up my phone, 35 calls in a row.
But that amazingly smart dude, who gave me all of his friendship and an equal amount of hangovers, brought something even more valuable into my life.
Her name is Giulia.
There aren't enough words in the world to tell all of you how much she means to me.
How much I look up to her.
How she is an example for me in every way. How much she has taught me.
And I’m not talking about teaching me how to drink, smoke and tell ALL THE MEN about women's' rights at the same time.
I am talking about how she teaches me to be a woman.
A woman who deals with the world with an open mind, a big heart and a lot of respect.
A woman who taught me that my best friend will live the rest of his life in total happiness. A life full of amazing and unbelievable stories. Full of witches of Tuscany uncontrollable laughter.
A life built on the foundations of love and adventure.
My dear Dennis and Giulia,
I wish you more than luck.
I love you.