Friday evening, our neighbors arrived with pizza and their three girls. We share dinners together now and then, and the kids hang out even more often. My daughter and their eldest are in the same class, and we can see their house from ours. Packing five kids and four adults around our dinner table is quite a squeeze, and the kids are quite boisterous together. It is a great break from the normal routine, and it is community.
Tag Archives: friends
So the 24th was my birthday, and I did not publish a post. This one is retroactive.
I went out with a friend who was one of the two folks who scoured the town on my 21st to find an open bar for my first legal drink. We ended up getting a six-pack at a corner grocery because everything else was closed down on Christmas Eve. I wasn’t even carded until my two friends dragged me back in and demanded that the ritual be observed. This many years later, there are many businesses open in the evening on my birthday. While some see this as the attack on Christmas, I love it. Regardless, I was able to have dinner with my wife and spend some time with a good friend who has been there for many of my birthdays over the years.
I wonder how my own kids will approach this major milestone and how they will handle things like alcohol. I was very late on the scene and only really tested my limits in my sophomore year in college. I never touched it in high school. I think I was an exception, but I really don’t know. Who will be my kids’ friends when they are experimenting. What will their safety net be. I hope they have as good friends as I did however they go about the experiences of growing up.
On Sunday I returned from a weekend near Bloomington, Indiana where I have attended a dance event for almost 20 years. During the weekend, I talk with friends, make new friends, camp, swim in a lake, find fossils, listen to music, dance, and many other things. All of these combine to make this weekend one of my favorite times of the year; it feeds my core person.
In time, perhaps next year, I plan to bring my children to this event. Because it is so close to the beginning of the school year, it is hard to get away as a family, but that might happen, too. I can’t wait to see my daughter discovering fossils, sleeping in her tent, listening to music, and most of all being welcomed by a community to which I am strongly connected.
I hope these thing become part of her core, too.
The neighborhood in which we live is bursting with young families, and yet it only just feels that we are building community. One thing that has helped is that one of our neighbors with a daughter just a bit younger than our own often hosts parties and is a social hub. With this family, we have started a babysitting co-op which is slowly chugging along. On Saturday, we had another get together to which two other families joined us.
My daughter’s preschool has also been the source of some community. There are a bunch of wonderful families with whom we have made connections.
It is slow partly because the culture in Boston is not overly conducive to networking, but also it is slow because having two kids makes it hard to get out and do things.
These things, however are steps in the right direction, and I feel that it will slowly gain momentum and become a strong community for us.