I feel very blessed to have lived in the same area most of my life. Yes, there were early years in the south, as in Deep South, years I can't remember. There were the years in college in the central valley, long hot or foggy years, depending on the season. But mostly, I've lived in: San Francisco, Orinda, Lafayette, Berkeley, and Oakland, California.
You might say I could use a little broadening in my life--that I need to leave and experience another area and live more fully. But because I've lived here so long, I have layers of acquaintances and friends from various parts of my life. Last week, I went to lunch with a woman I met when we were girls, back around 1979 or so. She was kind of a swinging, wildish girl, older by a few years, and very cool. She could wield a bong and grow the pot for it, too.
Now, we are near or over fifty and talking about our children's futures (when to cut off the stream of money) and our parents. We aren't wild, haven't wielded a bong in decades. But how amazing to have gone through so much with one person and be able to reconnect every so often with those aspects of our younger selves by talking now. Sometimes, I see the glint in her eye, and I remember the weekend a number of us went to her parents' cabin and basically ran around nude and stoned for two days. How scary that would look now. How fun then.
(If I ever run for president, I can just say, yes I inhaled!)
My winter break has given me the chance to have many such meals like this, with people I've met over the years in the same place. My 86-year-old friend I met at my gym. She works out every day and wants to hear all the news that I can provide about my world and the world. We went out with another friend from the gym, a woman I met while we were both separating from our husbands. Situational friends that proved steady. Now, the three of us sit together a few times a year and dish.
I'm going out with my realtor this week as well as a woman I met here on redroom. Next week, a friend I met in 1990 in a therapy group; the week after, a woman I met when we were five.
Aside from the huge restaurant bill, this is a blessing, a wealth of connection, a great opportunity to spend time with people who remind me of who I am, who we were--and I learn a bit about what is to come next, later, soon. It's all a mystery and so interesting and rich. As I contemplate my open calendar next to me right now, I see a January patchwork, a quilt of life.
Causes Jessica Inclán Supports
Women for Women International Goodwill Industries Lindsey Wildlife Museum Freecycle.org