just ponderin'

… on talkin’ the talk as we walk the walk

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Hollis Street Barn; Dunstable, Massachusetts

Today I took a walk with a friend and there was talk along with it.

I’m not gonna say ‘girl talk’ because I have had many guy friends over the years who are just as capable of this type of talk. Several of my guy friends are also way better at gossip than any woman I know. They know way more, and are even way more into it. Sure, when they do it they call it ‘bullshitting’ but… po-tay-to, po-tah-to … It’s gossip.

Anyway, the type of talking my friend and I engaged in today necessitates a willingness to fall into a certain rhythm that is nearly completely selfless. Mainly because both of you are going to be interrupted.

lot.

And the subject is going to change, suddenly and without warning.

lot.

And you are also going to remember that you forgot to make the point in a story, many topics back, and you are going to suddenly find yourself needing to return to it because you just need to make sure that you didn’t leave that subject hanging, like a lonely chad in a hotly contested election.

And that will happen… you guessed it…

lot.

So, I cannot share the details of every topic touched on, but you should know that I have known this particular friend for plus or minus 32 years and the Nearly Perfect Husband went to kindergarten with her husband. So we have history. There is no hiding – for her or for me – when we are together.

So.

Topics.

1. My hair.

2. Her hair.

3. Her house (she is very clean. I cannot compete.)

4. Her Mom.

5. My Mom and Dad-in-law.

6. Old Yankee Men in general.

7. My long-time love and adoration of Old Yankee Men.

8. Dysfunctional friendships.

9. Each of our mental health and what that has to do with the friendships we have had at various times in our lives.

10. Dunstable.

11. How pretty the town is.

12. How sometimes we don’t appreciate the places where we grew up (she grew up here, her husband and the Nearly Perfect Husband grew up one town over… making her the hot chic from the town next door. (Oh ya. She was cute and skied (as in ski-d… not in sky-d.  But, then again, she is tall, so I suppose she was a ski-er… who sky-d). And because she was from the next town over and she ski’d, she was exotic. Oh ya. I remember it all.)

13. How sometimes we don’t appreciate the town we moved to and raised our kids in either. Mainly because kids are actually puny, diaper-donning black holes, sucking in all your time and energy and leaving you with no ability to appreciate the beauty around you.

Okay, that last part was a lie. We did not say that to each other. I don’t even know who took over my body and made me type that. 

14. The ongoing bridge-fixing-necessitated detour in town and how it is completely messing up lives.  And mail delivery.

15.  Getting older.

16. Getting wiser.

17. Urination.

18. Kids getting jobs and apartments.

19. Kids getting girlfriends.

20. Kids graduating high school.

21. The astonishing meaning wrapped up in a boot camp graduation.

22. Needing less.

23.  Going the wrong way on a one way street when one’s kid has to poop.

24. The importance of having the time to read on a back yard swing.

And, we didn’t talk about this, but as I was leaving and my friend was going to be with her 82 year-old Mom, who was having some tests done, I found myself thinking a bit.

I didn’t carry my childhood forward, even into my early adulthood. Dysfunctional childhoods often lead to dysfunctional early friendships and, without the safety of parental guide-rails, I had my share.

I met this particular friend when we were eighteen years old, shortly after I left my childhood home, and childhood friends, behind. And we have managed to stay in touch, sometimes regularly and other times not so regularly, since then.

And today I found myself appreciating the fact that we probably walked five miles, covered twenty-four or more subjects (including full or partial stories for each), and will most likely never run out of subjects to talk about.

And we are both now watching out for people who used to watch out for us, and we both know each others’ people very well, because they were the ones who would invite us into their homes and who would tell us what snacks were in their refrigerator or cupboards when we were ‘the kids’ more than three decades ago (and I’m not saying how much more than three decades ago!).

But to be able to share the things happening in these times, with someone who knew me in those times?

A gift, for sure.

We’ll be talking and walking a lot in the next few months, I think. And I’ll be sure to take pictures (and more than a few mental notes) along the way.

Today’s pics of chic and trendy Dunstable:

Thanks for readin’.

Hollis Street Barn; Dunstable, MA

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