I cannot concentrate all my friendship on any single one of my friends because no one is complete enough in himself.
~ Anais Nin
BOOKS READ THIS YEAR
Angels and Demons
Yes, I watched another Sopranos episode
Lots of Animal Planet
The L Word
35 minutes on the exercise bike
Breakfast: Raisin Bran
A POST SCRIPT
I hope people have the chance to stop by the MoveOn web site and see the 30 second commercial that CBS refused to air because it is critical of the Bush Administration. While you're at it, watch all of the commercials that competed to become the 30 second spot submitted to CBS. Some of them are quite thought-provoking. I particularly liked "What are we teaching our children?" and "In my country."
Makes you think...
ALSO: I thought I had linked to this before, but can't find it. Those of you who read or have read Rob Hudson's Darn Tootin' should be sure to read his January 30 entry, which at present is linked here, but will be moved to a different URL when he has a new entry up. You might want to help.
2 February 2004
This seems to be the time for old friendships.
First there was the joyous reunion with Eduardo this past week.
This weekend couldnt exactly be called "reunion" weekends, but we spent time with two couples that we havent seen a lot of in a long time.
Michele and Richard came for dinner on Saturday night. We first met them when the kids were at Tiny Tots nursery school in Oakland back in the 1960s. (I really, really hoped that Tiny Tots had a web page, but alas they do not...)
Though they were not part of our original Newman Hall group of friends, they quickly got adopted by that group and its sometimes hard to believe that we didnt go to UC Berkeley with them.
Our group was really close knit in those days. We all lived within a mile or so of each other, we partied together, we babysat each others kids, we took care of each others pets and plants, we vacationed together, we forged fast friendship and established traditions that have lasted forty years.
Clam dip. Someone always made clam dip. Vats and vats of clam dip and mountains of potato chips. The kids -- some 23 of them -- would flock to the clam dip bowl. To this day, whenever clam dip shows up someone is certain to caution the second generation not to "hover" around the bowl.
Michele showed up on Saturday with a bowl of clam dip. There were only four of us, so we didnt worry about hovering.
At some point during the early years of our friendship, Michele and Richard bought some land up in Mendocino county and our group often camped there. The kids referred to it as "Erics property" because the land belonged to Erics mom and dad. To this day, its still called Erics property.
Since this wasnt a public campground, we could pretty much do what we wanted. There was an "open air outhouse" on a hill behind the barbeque pit. Youd walk up the hill, turn a stick on a tree to let people know that the outhouse was occupied. It only had 3 walls because there was on the top of a hill and there was nobody at the bottom of the hill. So while you sat there doing your business you could look out over the fog in the valley. Eventually loggers bought up the land below and I dont know that the outhouse has the same "glamour" any more!
The kids had weddings at the property. Jeri was married and divorced a couple of times to Char and Mikes son, Cam, before she was 12 (a fact which Cams current fiancee has gracefully decided to overlook)
We also went on hunting expeditions to gather huckleberries -- stalking the wild huckle, we said (I told that story in an entry back in 2001) and put them in sourdough pancakes made with batter which Char slept with in her tent at night, to keep warm enough to continue to "grow." (We ate the pancakes with gin fizzes that Richard made in a blender he attached to a generator attached to his truck!)
Its funny, but when I started this entry, I didnt know where it was going to go. But as I sit here and think back over the years, there are just so many memories associated with that group, of which Michele and Richard were an integral part.
They moved up to the Sierra foothills a few years ago, a mere hours drive from here, but this was the first time weve actually gotten together. Weve seen each other at various other social occasions (the last being Tom and Laurels wedding), but its been a very long time since weve sat around drinking wine (well...I had water) and eating clam dip together, just the four of us.
(I also made an amazing dinner, which was an experiment. I found a recipe for Moroccan leg of lamb in a Weight Watchers cookbook. You rub the outside of the lamb with a mixture of olive oil, mint, paprika, cumin, garlic and lemon juice. Oh my was that tasty!)
As if a visit from one pair of the Newman group wasnt enough, on Sunday Mike and Char, who were in Davis for a SuperBowl party, stopped by after the game for a cup of coffee to sustain them for their drive back to the Bay Area.
I dont see them enough. Walt sees them regularly when he goes to the San Francisco Symphony, but I no longer go go the symphonies, so its been awhile since weve had the chance to sit and visit too.
Sometimes it feels very insulated -- in a cozy sort of way --living in Davis, away from
all the people that we spent so much time with for so long. Since we've all grown in
different directions, it's probably inevitable that our closeness would not continue at
the same intensity over time. But once in awhile, its nice to touch
bases with our past, to catch up with old friends, and to hover for a bit around a bowl of
clam dip again.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Weight Lost to date: 43.8 lbs