Monday, January 20, 2014
in the company of women
i have, over the past year, found a really awesome group of women friends to hang out with. one of them was able to borrow her sister's summer house near the west coast this past weekend and we spent a truly blissful 24 hours there together.
earlier in the week, we had been to a salon evening, where we got these red yarn bracelets, which we were to wear for three days with the purpose of looking at it and meditating on all of the happiness and good luck we would have in the new year. we decided already then to take them with us to the beach and release them into the north sea, in a kind of ceremony.
so we each took off our bracelet and released it into the sea in our own fashion. but it felt powerful as we stood there together, giving the little bit of yarn a last moment of silent, individual good intentions for 2014, before sending it out into the waves to be free.
then we wandered down the rock-strewn beach. so funny that just a few weeks ago, there were a few shells on the beach, but no stones at all and now it's covered with stones. (tho' i will grant that this is a different beach, a bit farther north).
we found a small beach ball in the waves and kicked it around a bit. this despite being five grown women. our little groups formed and reformed as we all walked and talked and enjoyed being together in a setting apart from our everyday.
after our trip to the beach, we retired back to the warm summer house, where a fire was soon burning merrily in the wood-burning stove. we got out our art supplies and began both the drink and the draw phase of the weekend. i made a gin cocktail (of course), using homemade pear-ginger cordial as a base. we each brought something to share (both wine and food).
we ate a tuna mousse with some very good bread, followed by a gorgeous fish soup and then my chocolate pots with salted caramel in the bottom for dessert. all along, there was wine. late in the evening, after the crochet lessons (i really learned how to make a granny square this time!), we turned to pomegranate gajol and a smoky laphroaig whiskey that i brought along. happily, lots of laughter and water in between kept it from going totally wrong the next day.
we don't really have any rules for drink and draw, but we did decide that we all had to draw the little silvery fish we saw on the beach in some form or another. other than that, we all indulged in whatever we wanted to. several of us are using an old book as the base, humument style. we had quite some fun reading from one of the books, which had a lot of illustrations as well. old books provide a surprising base for creativity. my own is called talismanen (the talismen) and tho' it's about knights and such, there are meaningful words on every page if you select carefully.
there was much laughter and sharing and deep, serious conversations as well. it all felt very, very good for the soul. i don't know what it is, but as i grow older, i find that more and more i crave hanging out with women friends. our spouses and families weren't far from our thoughts or our conversation, but it was good to just be together, eating, drinking and drawing and even singing. and crocheting. just the girls.