I was fortunate to get to go to the beach for a 4 day weekend last week with girlfriends of 45-50 years. We knew each other in the youth group, at summer camp, and in the college age group from our respective churches. We have a lot of history together but we also have a lot of current events to share, too. We talked like crazy from Friday evening through Monday, everything from our kids & grandkids to our jobs, books we’ve been reading, movies we like, and deeper philosophical topics. We encourage each other and nurture each other and sometimes give each other a push in the right direction. We also ate delicacies and treats that each one brought to share. We walked on the beach and talked some more. We played word games and laughed a lot.
Here is a list of authors that came up in our discussions:
mysteries by Susan Wittig Albert & Robin Paige (recommended to read in order)
Rhys Bowen—Evan Evans (Wales);Her Royal Spyness
Fannie Flagg (I just read 2 of hers between Christmas and New Years: A Redbird Christmas and I Still Dream About You)
Dick Francis-tightly constructed horse-related mysteries
Madeleine L’Engle: The Severed Wasp; Certain Women
Fingerprints of God
(I am also going to post a list of movies separately.)
A few years back some of us went to a funeral of an older woman from my church. She had 5 girlfriends who got up to speak individually about what their friendship with her meant to them. These friends got together regularly and purposefully for birthdays and hobbies and musical events. After the funeral one of my friends said to me, “ If we’re going to have friendships like this at the end of our lives we have to start doing something about it now.” And she is the one who started having us with our husbands over to her home for dinner once a year or so. At our last dinner, (which was before Christmas and meant to include caroling since most of us enjoy singing but we talked so much we never did get to the singing) we girls decided we needed to get away for a weekend for more time together. So that’s how it started: with a funeral as a wake-up call. You have to be intentional about friendships; life is just too busy to ‘go with the flow’ if you want to have meaningful relationships as an outcome.
This week we’ve been having a round of e-mail thank you notes from each one, remembering the delights we shared. It’s not just about the past, though: we have a present to enjoy and a future to look forward to.