It was a day out with a friend-a friend who doesn’t make demands and who appears to enjoy everything. It was a good day. The best part is that by doing something with a friend I got to see things partly from her point of view.
In a large antique and art mall called The Screen Door in Asheville we poked around through the stalls. The mall contains an eclectic collection of things brought there by a variety of people with a variety of interests. She and I found things we both liked and there were things that she particularly liked. My friend knows antiques and she is particularly drawn to pieces of glass and old pieces of furniture.
Hearing her talk about those pieces and the history about those things make them much more interesting. She was a lens through which I could see these things in a new way.
We lunched at the Grove Park Inn. She had read a book about the Grove Park and began to tell the stories she had learned like a docent at a museum. My daughter used to work at the Grove Park and so I took her to some of the places at the Grove Park that my daughter had liked to share with me. We were lenses for each other with an extra one, my daughter by proxy added in.
So in some ways lunch was shared with my friend, my daughter and those historical figures who my friend brought to life from her reading. Then there was the waiter who joined in conversation with us explaining some of the new renovations. In one of the shops we had a conversation with the sales lady and in our talk we learned even more about the Grove Park and its purchase by Omni.
After lunch we went to the house of a mutual friend and artist to pick up one of my paintings. My lunch mate had not been to this friends house. We went into a studio to pick up my painting and into her house to see her new kitten. We talked about art – art collected and art being produced. We talked about making a date to lunch together and perhaps add another person into the date.
In seven hours we drove around 100 miles. We fed our minds, bodies and spirits through sharing experiences, talents and ideas. Was it productive in any other way? No clothes got washed,no errands run, no kitchens cleaned or dinners cooked.
But I will remember this day. The ones when I washed clothes or ran errands or cleaned the kitchen or cooked are all piled up in the corner to be sorted and run through again and again.
The human spirit needs days where they can be freed to experience and share and hopefully grow in unexpected ways. Sometimes our friends and new acquaintances provide a fresh pair of eyes to see the world we have started taking for granted. Like old glasses we need a new lens to look through and refresh ourselves.
No bells, no whistles, but a simple invitation and some gas in the tank. I had a good day.