For several years I planned luncheons for a few close friends, inviting them twice each year to join me for a simple lunch and time of visiting. (I picked up this idea from another friend, who probably continues to this day.)
We usually had one new dish, either the main course, a different kind of salad, or my favorite, a new dessert. I tried out many over the years and really can’t decide which one I enjoyed most. Perhaps it was the meringues, baked, cooled and filled with berries, topped with homemade whipped cream. It was so different.
It was always a joy to see the expressions of surprise and delight on the faces of my friends when they were served these new dishes. Not much makes me happier than to serve a delicious meal to friends who relish the day, the food and the fellowship.
After lunch, we moved into the living room and had a time of visiting before they reluctantly began to leave. I would give them each a small token of their visit, maybe candies, a small bread, or cookies, homemade, of course. Whatever it was, it matched the season of the year.
This went on for some time until gradually, one by one, family health problems or other situations robbed them of the ability to participate. Soon, it was down to one or two and not wanting to replace these special friends on my guest list, I finally just discontinued the luncheons.
Years passed, spouses were lost, illnesses confined some. We saw most of them fairly regularly, some not so much. It was a sad time when we lost these times of getting together.
Now, another milestone is about to occur. One of these friends has decided it’s time to re-locate to be nearer her children. She is selling her house and many of the household goods, making it easier to make the move.
I was heartbroken when I heard this news. However, I realize there comes a time for each of us to make that decision. We may not be making a long distance move, we may just be re-locating to a different residence.
What will my decision be when it comes my turn? Will I be able to rationalize as this friend has done and make a move that would present a workable situation?
Or will I fight it to the last breath? I would hope that I could be rational and make a choice that would be best for my family.
But, after spending my entire life on this acreage that made up my parents’ farm, I have no idea how I would adjust to a different environment.
A group of these luncheon friends will gather tomorrow, not in our home, but in a small restaurant to share one more lunch before the move is made.
I can not say how the hour will play out. My one desire is that we can keep an upbeat attitude and not make her sad over the upcoming move. I know it will be sad; saying goodbye is never easy
I hope we can just use that old campers’ goodbye phase, “We’ll see you down the road.”.
Fannie Moore is a journalist who lives in Shongaloo where she enjoys writing on a variety of subjects.