One of the things about true friends, you feel deflated and elated the exact moment they drive away from a wonderful soul filling visit. As you watch the tail lights on their car (and their broken Go Bobcats, University of Montana license plate frame) slip out of your view, a part of who you are seems to drive away with them. Then in a flutter of your eyelashes, you are elated that they came for a visit. You feel grateful and lucky and mindful of the visit. You have a little more spring in your step. Your mind, heart and soul are swirling with all the goodness that was surrounding you for a couple of days. Your throat is a bit scratchy because you talked so much. You wonder, did I monopolize the conversation did I blather on and on?
Some how our pitchers got filled up and they were overflowing, dripping down the outside of our containers. There were puddles of water laying at the base of both our pitchers. I feel like we Graced each other with uplifting and fulfilling therapy of epic portions. We ate, and ate and drank smoothies and juice and ate popcorn. We laughed and shared nasty, horrid, crappy feelings, had teary eyes, had show n tell and our sides hurt from giggling too much. We talked about grandbabies a LOT. We tested each other’s memories by trying to remember old Rainbow and College days. She brought gifts and jaunty flowers (is it me, or do Peonies smell heavenly?) I offered up little gifts she found in “her” bedroom. A promise was made and kept for NO mint on the pillow. I do love to find very unique, expensive, lovely, charming little pieces of heaven in the form of chocolates or mints and lay them on her pillow. I want her to always, always have sweet, sweet dreams when she visits. She made me promise NO mint on the pillow. “Please don’t go to any fuss”. I crossed my heart, promised…………………. I did not promise that I wouldn’t put a raw parsnip gently on a lace doily. Here’s to practically perfect, parsnipity dreams! Bet she wished she had the decadent mint instead, ha.
One of the things we did was taken in the Eric Carle art exhibit at the Tacoma Art Museum. Our color soaked friendship has bloomed over 35 years. We are both grateful & thankful our lives are tangled in such knots and twists, that it has no way of ever coming undone. The museum trip was one of the best things we have ever, ever experienced. I am not sure if it was just what we both needed? I am not sure if it was perfect timing? I do know it was a boatload of HOPE. For an artist to live through the atrocities of war. To see and remember the horrid effects that war leaves behind with the living……….and then go on to create such goodness, such “happy”, such alive pieces of saturated and exquisite color was a case study of pure HOPE. To see the thank you notes that he has painted and sent, to stand inches away from works of pure genius was thrilling. Butterflies in your stomach thrilling. It was in that moment when we were sitting on a bench together, swinging our feet, that you realize this moment will be seared in your heart for your lifetime. You are, together, right in the middle ankle-deep puddles of goodness. You are experiencing deep knowledge, creativity and pure artistic talent in a blink of an eye. To learn at the exact moment, how Mr. Carle creates his interpretation of art is another moment that will ties us together forever.
“Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops at all.”
Our version of friendship includes first time driving a stick shift, my first taste of beer, weddings, babies born, the first time we both saw the White House, the moment our breath was taken away when we saw the Lincoln Memorial, together we went to the top of the Washington monument. Our take on friendship now includes buying postcards to share our museum moments with a couple other friends and talking about, sharing photographs & Eric Carle books for our grandbabies. The color drenched ribbon that swirled and twisted around us will bind us together forever by being bathed in the concentrated, exaggerated color of HOPE. Unbeknownst to each of us, we were searching for, needed and both found an overflowing, splashed sides of a paint tray full of colorful HOPE.
“The very least you can do in your life is figure out what you hope for. And the most you can do is live inside that hope. Not admire it from a distance but live right in it, under its roof.” ~Barbara Kingsolver