Yesterday evening I was treated to a rare visit by Dick and Judy, old friends who stretch back through the decades. Dick was my high school sweetheart, and then, in our mid-30s (1970’s) my second husband; my friendship with Judy stems from that same time. I introduced her to Dick after our two short years together. They are still together. We are all tribal. Damn! Forgot to take pictures. This will have to do —
The above shot was taken on Dick’s 50th birthday, and it’s already been nearly 24 years since then! We are at the yurts in Kelly, Wyoming where I lived for many years, with other old friends. Since we all turn the same age in the same year, and Dick’s birthday is first, we celebrate on August 4. That’s Judy, on the left with Laurie in back. I’m in back of Dick, who has his arm around Ellen.
After dinner at a Turkish restaurant downtown yesterday evening here in Bloomington with my son Colin (Dick’s former stepson, who he hadn’t seen since Colin was 10 years old) of the Garden Tower Project, I asked Colin to take us out to his warehouse, where he is making the prototypes for further inventions having to do with growing our own food — an ingenious composter that needs only sunlight and airflow to actually get hot enough to destroy pathogens, a snap-together greenhouse for a single Garden Tower, and a nifty watering can with three functions.
On our way out there, Colin pointed out a Tower that’s in “full flower” in front of Bloomingfoods, downtown. I asked him to stop so I could take a picture.
After our shop tour, Colin dropped us off here and we sat on the screen porch with a bottle of wine and fireflies winking at us from below.
All in all they were here about 15 hours, including sleep overnight. Much of our talk was taken up with tales of interpersonal dramas in decades past. Like the time when Judy and I held a diplomatic meeting for Dick (Judy’s new boyfriend) and Dennis (her furious and deposed first husband) to meet each other face to face. LOOONG story . . . involving Dick, as a journalist, doing a story that involved the local hospital pathologists making twice as much as the national average — and one of those pathologists happened to be Dennis! Who then vowed revenge. Instead, Dick ended up with not only his job, but his ex-wife! Thus the necessity for the meeting.
Dennis has since died, or I wouldn’t tell this story here. On the other hand, he’d probably laugh too.
That’s the thing. What seems so horrible or nail-biting during the time it’s going on, in hindsight mutates into yet one more hilarious scene in the endless play of illusions, as our clashing, crashing, competitive egos slowly learn to hopefully, eventually, just plain get out of the way of authentic life.
As I said to young housemate Brie this morning, after their early departure: “I hope the world lasts long enough for your generation to have friends from way back with whom you can share memories from five decades past. I hope you have a chance to recognize how life just becomes richer and richer over time.