We're not really good at this. Whether solitary by nature or defense, prickly, or lazy, amassing a sizable coterie of friends is something both devoted partner and I find difficult. Over time, as our friends have merged, we have, I think, stuck with a good group: the folks who come over at holiday time. But to suggest it's a large group would be false.
It's a good number, though. The friends we do keep are people for whom I like to think no favor is too large; ask away, our friends, and I hope we will do our best (notable exceptions to this rule, forgive us, involve the borough of Brooklyn and your friend's band, or similar - ask us for a kidney, on the other hand, and we'll see you in the OR). I would say that my only sadness is that all of our friends are not, independently, friends with one another. Similarly, we don't have wing-friends: those we do everything as a foursome friends.
Sadly, some of our favorite wing-friend candidates live a little too far afield for convenience. I like to think that if we didn't live, on average, 3500 miles away, we would not tire of one another should dinners together take place once a week instead of once a year. The B-s in France and the B-s in Portugal have, over time, given us more than their friendship; they've given us the friendship of their friends.
The gift of a ready-made social scene has been an inestimable delight, one that makes the parting and the distance more bittersweet. And opportunities for meeting in the middle are scarce - the stupid ocean between us offers little in the way of halfway points:
So, when we discovered that the B-s of Portugal and their friends (and ours!) the C-s had found a way to get us some Portuguese wine to warm our house, we were both delighted and misty. How can you toast someone thousands of miles away?
On a Friday, after a long week and ahead of a weekend that would see us hosting my family for brunch, there was little sweeter than opening a hand-picked bottle of wine, sitting on our sofa, clinking glasses, and thinking about four friends who allowed us to compose this warm little scene. We hope we can lure at least some of them to our hemisphere this winter for a little beach bonding, and we are storing the other bottle of wine until such time when the six of us may enjoy it together.
2 weeks ago