Published: Aug 29, 2006 04:20 PM
Modified: Aug 31, 2006 04:42 PM
We all know that girls just want to have fun, but four seventh-graders at McDougle Middle School found a way to share their fun with each other despite being separated most of the summer.
It all started while the four spent a weekend together in July to celebrate Ann Meyers' 12th birthday at her grandparent's Kerr Lake home. While there, Ann's mother gave them $2 to buy anything they wanted to share at the Trading Post, an old-fashioned gas station.
They were about to buy candy when Emily Powell saw a yellow-green bandana.
"I saw the bandana and fell in love with it," Emily said. "We thought we'd share it."
They adapted the idea of Ann Brashares' book, "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants," which was released as a movie early this summer.
Ashlan Jones, who had read the book and seen the movie, said the girls could make it their traveling bandana, and as with the pants (which miraculously fit four best friends of vastly varying body types), each girl would keep the bandana for a period of time and then send it to the next girl, and so on.
They also came up with the idea of sending a spiral notebook they called The Sisterhood Journal along with it so they could share their experiences while keeping in touch.
Lili Paradis, who spent a month on the coast at Camp Seafarer, had the bandana first. The first day she wore it, she had to leap into the ocean to rescue it.
"I was in a sailboat and this really annoying girl took it and kept dangling it over the water, then she dropped it into the ocean and I jumped in to get it," Lili said.
The traveling pants sisters agreed they wouldn't wash the jeans. The bandana sisters thought that was pretty gross, and agreed to wash their shared item.
Following advice from her bunkmates, Lili washed the bandana with toothpaste before sending it to Ann, who thought it smelled like chlorine after it arrived in the mail.
Following a trip to the mall while wearing the bandana, Ann wrote about her adventure in the journal, adding: "Sistaz! The bandana got a bath today! I put it in the washing machine! Horray! [sic]" She included a drawing of a front-loading washing machine with the bandana awash with bubbles.
The bandana provided comfort to Ashlan during the time she had it. She wore it during a scene at acting camp, then carried it in her mother's purse to the funeral of a local young man, Miles Whipper, who had died in a car accident.
Each girl found a different way to include the bandana in her wardrobe.
"I wore it around my waist tied in a knot," Ann said, showing her friends the diagonal twist she put on the cotton square to get it around her narrow frame.
"I wore it on my wrist wrapped around a bunch of times," Lili said.
"I wore it on my head, on a bangle or kept it in a bag," Ashlan said.
Emily's turn started last week.
"Everyone has worn it but me," she said, describing her initial disappointment at being last. "Now I'm kind of happy because it's had ocean water on it and everything! I'm wearing it to school the first day."
A piece of cloth kept the four friends connected while they were apart and will keep them linked as school begins.
"At first I didn't know if it would work out with everybody sending it," Ashlan said. "I had my doubts about it, but it really worked out."
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