YIKES! I almost forgot about celebrating today. One of the reasons I forgot is because I was reading a great book, one of my favorite genre, historical fiction. ORPHAN TRAIN is two stories, woven together. Molly is a seventeen-year-old girl who has grown up in the foster care system. In trouble for stealing a book from the library, she gets assigned to do community service cleaning an attic for a 91- year-old woman named Vivian. Molly soon discovers that Vivian was orphaned in a fire, and rode an orphan train from New York to Minnesota. It's a great story and one that I could definitely celebrate.
That's not what I'm celebrating though. I'm reading the book for book club next Friday, and book club is what I'm celebrating tonight. My book club has been together for a long, long time, more than 15 years. We started out with seven or eight people (it's been so long I can't exactly remember). I think the first book we read was MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD AND EVIL. We've been meeting, pretty much once a month, ever since.
That's a lot of books, but maybe more importantly, it's a whole lot of living. When Karen got married, we had our own rehearsal dinner, buying the ugliest bridesmaids' dresses we could find at the Goodwill, and then surprising Karen by wearing them to dinner at a fancy restaurant. We celebrated with Terri when she was married for the first time at age 50. We had a Hello Kitty sleepover at a hotel when Val moved to Iowa. When I surprised book club by announcing that I had decided to adopt, they quickly took on the role of the "Book Aunties," bringing casseroles and babysitting and providing moral support.
We've celebrated a lot of losses too. We've struggled together through hard jobs and bad bosses. We've all lost parents- my dad and Karen and Terri's mom to cancer, Brenna's dad to Alzheimers. We've watched dreams die. And through out all, we have been together.
Those gals- Karen, Laura, Brenna, Terri, and Val (from three thousand miles away) are my home girls.
And tonight, I'm celebrating more than twenty years of reading and friendship.