The cast of characters: a Jewish math whiz, a foul-mouthed Libertarian blonde, a Chinese/Japanese candy-obsessive, a Midwestern bio-ethicist, an Arabic-speaking Oregonian, and a heartsick camp counselor. The location: the Washington coastline and a rented residence that’s been decorated to look like the inside of an Anthropologie catalogue. If that sounds like the start to a Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants sequel, you’re half right.
A few weeks ago, I flew to Seattle for a long-awaited reunion with my seemingly unlikely collection of college friends. These are the girls who adopted me into their already tight family when I was facing friendship fallout during my sophomore year. These are the girls I ate lunch with at Pitzer (where we all watched “vegan” Greer nibble on cheese); these are the girls who left a party to visit me when I was sick on Halloween; and these are the girls who stared at the stars with me from the top of Mt. Baldy. We’re a motley crew, and often, our friendship feels like the happiest accident.
Our weekend in Aberdeen was delightfully uneventful. Armed with cheap red wine, Tinderbox coffee (roasted by the intimidatingly hip owners of our rented house), and carrot soup, we spent 90% of the trip splayed across floors and couches, talking about everything from Batman to rompers (obviously, I initiated both of those conversations). Even Megan, who dreads talk of “feelings” almost as much as she loves refined sugar, seemed content to blather through the hours.
What affected me even more than what was said during our few days together was what remained unsaid. Although we never spoke of my August losses (I wasn’t ready, and I might not be ready for awhile), everything I needed to hear was somehow given voice. As my friends clearly knew already, even silent support can resonate strongly.
I’m already looking forward to our next reunion, whenever and wherever that may be. Maybe by then we’ll be able to afford wine priced in the double-digits.