A delayed flight has me stranded in the Spokane airport so I’m sampling a flight of red wine at the Vintage Washington wine bar. So far, the Townshend blend is winning over the Indian Wells Cabernet or the Canoe Ridge Merlot, but the night is young and I have two more hours to wait. The Cab could easily pull out a win, so I will continue my dedicated research. (Hint to travelers: A flight of three choices is less expensive than two glasses.)
I’m coming home after a splendid time laughing and storytelling with sorority sisters. We met as college freshman at the University of Idaho more than forty years ago, and we were the first generation of career women. Our mothers didn’t work outside the home, and we had few role models for working women so we pulled up our big girl pants and figured out what to do. Now, at the end of our careers, we can relax and turn to other important issues, such as Cabernet and Colonoscopies.
Interesting facts: All six of us graduated from the University, three earned master’s degrees, and one has a Ph.D. One is a Vice Chancellor at the University of Tennessee, one is the Dean of the College of Letters and Social Sciences at the U of I, and one is a nationally published author. The other three are college instructors and retired teachers. We have 12 children – all gainfully employed – and not one wears a dog collar or has been in jail. We all have daughters and our main advice to them was: Be able to support yourself.
We worked when there were few childcare options, and we survived on five hours of sleep a night. After a day’s work, we fed and bathed our children, read them stories, tucked them into bed, and then we did white laundry on Monday, dark laundry on Tuesday, sheets and towels on Wednesday, and bought groceries on Thursday. We juggled piano lessons, Little League, and teacher conferences without a cell phone or computer. We paved the way as mentors for younger women who often didn’t appreciate the jungle we cleared so they could waltz through.
We have shared weddings, pregnancies, and the death of parents. Four of us have been married more than 30 years to the original husband, and two of us have been divorced and remarried. Four of us have grandkids and we’re positively giddy than we’ll have four in kindergarten in the fall. We’re already planning their future marriages to each other. The six of us have different political and religious beliefs, but that’s secondary to our main truth: We are true friends.
During the past three days, we have laughed ourselves silly while consuming copious quantities of Cabernet and platters piled with decadent desserts. We reflect on our lives, share our stories, and commiserate about health issues. Yes, we will endure those horrible colonoscopies and mammograms because we want to live long enough to enjoy more parties. We intend to march boldly into old age and tell any detractors to kiss our attitudes. And, we’ll never forget the day we rushed into the Delta Gamma sorority in Moscow and loudly proclaimed, “We are sisters.”
Today’s blog is sponsored by the red flight of wine at the Vintage Washington wine bar in the Spokane airport. Only $14 for the wine and $12 for the cheese plate. That’s the perfect way to end a splendid function with forty-year friends.