I don’t make friends easily. Just because I meet someone a few times does not automatically make them my friend. A true friend to me is like that super tough glue that I can never quite get off my fingers, no matter how hard I try. Same way with a really good friend. No matter how hard I try to be bossy or grumpy or just down right hateful…I just can’t get rid of them…but then I don’t really want to.
With some time on my hands, I decided I would fill a long held desire to learn to quilt. As I eavesdropped on a couple coworkers discussing quilting, I uncharacteristically invited myself to join them. I thought we had little in common, except maybe quilting. Unexpectedly, I found women who were willing to listen, sympathize and encourage each other through various stages of weight gain, hot flashes, surly adult children and those darn stubborn toilet bowl rings. We even did some quilting.
Soon I was joining the group in a kind of big girls field trip. Only a few were able to attend. Excuses consisted of illness and schedule conflicts but I really think they were scared off by the thought of being sequestered for hours in a sea of puddled hips in the backseat of a SUV. Our journey was buoyed by zippered bags of assorted chocolates; salty snacks and pop flowing like wine.
We bunked in one hotel room like a bunch of college girls on spring break, without the bikinis and sunburns. Days started early. In the exhibit hall vendors, representing every product or service related to quilting I could imagine, had me corralled by rows of quilts, as they lead me off to market.
Miraculously, those of us who have bad knees and bad backs and worse bladders were able to shop for hours without complaint. Barb, who can barely carry a bag of groceries or a squirming grandchild, suddenly found herself shifting her load of a new sewing machine so she could get her arm around a no glare lamp. A packaging engineer could not have done a better job fitting that space age iron into my purse without crushing my stash of catalogs. Yes, there was talk of going without birthday presents and moving up Christmas shopping into April. There was more serious talk of SUV hitches and trailer rental to transport our hordes of early birthday and Christmas treasures home.
Blistered feet, pounding rain showers and scenic route miscalculations could not dampen my spirits and the joy I felt spending time immersed in good quilt shopping. For me it was three days of sharing time bonded in friendship, just like that super sticky glue… joyously stuck to all my fingers.
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