I used to think it was hard to have a lot of female friends, but with time, age, experience and the cruel lessons of life, I am learning they are the most important.
Please don't misunderstand, this is not about having a vast number of women that sit on a shelf like a collection. This is about interacting, learning, sharing points of view, listening, laughing and having a real relationship. A relationship that may flow fast and furious over the rough spots, maintain a calm and steady stream or suffer from drought until the rain falls again. A relationship, a friendship, is about what each person brings to it, takes from it and feeds it. Ah, feeding...that is something I am more comfortable sharing about.
To start, a creamy and satisfying turkey and rice soup. The calendar may say August, but some nights simply cry out for the comfort of soup and when catching up with someone you haven't seen in quite some time, the gentle reassurance of soup is calming and familiar.
An appetizer for a main course is a favorite of mine for two reasons; I can't always finish the large portion of an entree (and I'd rather leave a little room for a sweet finish) and it seems to generally work out to be a smidge cheaper in the long run even with the addition of a dessert. The mussels in a creamy butter sauce are succulent, meaty and tender. A gentle squeeze of the lemon juice gives just enough zing to the rich dish.
Yes, I even eat the greens on the plate. I don't like unnecessary garnish but love when it serves a flavorful purpose.
Catching up unfolds slowly and naturally like a content toddler from a nap. Stretching and blinking to life, the topics of conversation range from books to travel, family, and relationships. I listen attentively to both what is said and the details that I am allowed to fill in on my own. In some ways I want to capture the descriptions, what made us laugh, and what made us each pause and allow the other's pain to really penetrate the soul. Joy and sorrow - a classic pairing.
For dessert another classic, but with a twist. Warmed apple pie with walnuts, vanilla ice cream, whipped cream and caramel sauce. Oh, my.
I know my stomach has reached its limit but my tongue argues, "But it is so delicious! We can't stop now!"
More stories, the meal comes to an end, we hug good-bye and I still have words left swirling in my soul, waiting to settle. Lady friends ensure you are Fed Well.