Yesterday was a magical day. I had The Most Thrilling Thrift experience, but that will get its own glorious post when my camera is back. An ivory moon played peek-a-boo among the treetops and hills on our car ride home. It drew the gauzy clouds over its face like a toddler who supposes she can’t be seen. My long friend Mel came for a visit and we found ourself tooling around Boise, in that delicious position, outside the Get from Point A to Point B mentality, where we were free to stop wherever our whims took us.
As we drove on a major artery, I craned my head looking for a street address to get my bearings.
“Great Harvest Bread Company – doesn’t that look wonderful?” I said.
“Let’s stop,” Mel replied.
It was a lovely bakery, the nutty aroma of wheat dough invitation enough. The woman behind the counter was the perfect balance of helpfulness and reserve. We chatted amiably when she said, “You look so familiar to me.”
I shrugged and mentioned my home town with a questioning lilt.
“Do you know ____?” she mentioned her sister-in-law’s name, (V) a dear friend, neighbor, and home schooler.
Suddenly it clicked. V and I stayed at her (E’s) house twelve years ago when we came to Boise for a Andrew Pudewa writing seminar.
“But I thought you moved to Michigan,” I said.
“We moved back.” she grinned.
Twelve years ago.
What do I remember?
“I remember that you had a lovely teacup collection that you’d gotten at thrift stores. I remember that your house smelled wonderful even though you had a baby in diapers.” I didn’t say it, but I remember how the harmony between the kids, the love that lubricated the relationships made it such a comfortable home to be in.
“You know what I remember about you? You asked how I home schooled. I told you that I used many different materials and methods. You responded, ‘Oh, you’re an Eclectic Homeschooler.’ And I’ve used that term ever since.”
I find this “chance” encounter as good an argument for the existence of God as The Argument of Efficient Causality. More than an apologetic, it is a delight, an unexpected gift. Like the delicious and satisfying sliver of Honey Wheat bread E was sampling, that little encounter was a foretaste of heaven.