There are those who have an extensive tree of friends. These chaps and chapeses appear to be on an unending carousel of revelry, both benign and otherwise. For better or worse, I do not count myself among them. While my circle of acquaintances is varied and wide; the friends near and dear to my heart are far fewer in number. Loyalty, laughter, and largesse of spirit are what this élite cadre of friends of mine has in common. We trust one another with “our most appalling secrets”, as Amy March said in Little Women, as well as those secrets of a lesser nature.
Sometimes I wish to delve into something more than an acquaintanceship with some of those I have known. However, I ask myself whether or not that individual would tolerate my intensely private nature, my need for solitude for writing and reading, my overall lack of interest in large parties, and my abhorrence of being programmed continually with commitments. Far from being anti-social, I revel in the company of my tried and true friends. Keeping in touch with my friends who live thousands of miles away is now so much easier thanks to the internet and smart phones.
I take delight in having a teacher friend over to share a latte and biscotti. I delight in Sunday brunch with my travel agent friend, who, like myself, is first-generation Italian, and whose father is from the same Italian village as my father. I cherish traveling with my Houston friend once a year in a far-flung area of the United States where neither of us has visited, and discovering together the town’s charms. One of my finest indulgences is traveling or simply spending time with my daughter. We are mother and daughter it is true, but we are also the best of friends. I luxuriate in the fact that she still likes my company, even though she is a twenty-something and has an active academic and social life. Other close friends circle my orb and I am grateful for their camaraderie.
Some may find my world close-knit and tedious, but my niche on this planet suits me mighty fine. Extraordinary friends, with whom I break bread, toast with vino, and keep close to my heart, enrich my life. I would like to believe they feel the same way.
Ciao for now.