This evening we shared an amazing meal with friends that started out as a dinner party but turned into a potluck (everyone brought something to share, and everyone also brought wine:) by default. This was a last-minute arrangement with friends: Drew’s colleague and cycling buddy Doug asked Drew if we wanted to come over in the afternoon, after our slow-cooker meal had already been cooking for 3 hours, so I brought it for everyone to try. I was happy to see Doug’s wife Effie, whom I know from various activities like Protestant Women of the Chapel. We were thrilled to see Drew’s other cycling buddy, Brad, and his beautiful family that recently arrived: Sarah and kiddos Alexis (10) and Max (14 months). An even better surprise was that another of Drew’s cycling buddy/colleagues showed up with his wife, Natalie, and kiddos Oliver, Peter and Alexandra. Natalie and I had already figured out that we were kindred spirits at a corporate dinner party one month ago, but then I realized that Sarah falls into that category too. Realizing that there are kindred spirits that you missed right as you leave sucks, in one word.
Don’t misinterpret me; I have several friends here who are kindred spirits, 2 are even Italian! But knowing that there were other gals here that also would have been fun to hang out with is kind of a shame. I can only blame the intense cycling hubbies for biking without introducing their wives sooner! I’ve noticed that I often manage to find random kindred spirits right before I leave a place and move on to the next. In case you also find yourself in a similar boat, here are some musings that are in my heart after a wine-filled evening.
The world is small. People move much more often for many different reasons and there is always a possibility that you may meet again. Besides that, social platforms like email, whatsapp, iMessage and (God help me) Facebook can help you keep up with all of those whom you happen to meet at any point in your journey, even 18 days away from departure.
One amazing evening with friends old and new can lift your spirits. In case y’all didn’t realize, I’m pretty torn up about leaving Italy. It’s been my absolute favorite place to live out of anywhere that I have ever lived. Reaching Day 18 amidst packing (or procrastinator lack of packing) is a huge emotional pull in the “why are we leaving the best place we’ve ever lived” tearful state of semi-denial. Enjoying time away from the slightly chaotic state of our house with friends old and new was the best possible way to have spent the evening.
Dr. Seuss was right when he said “don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”