By Susan Dromey Heeter
In the book, Instant Karma, 8, 879 Ways to Give Yourself and Others Good Fortune Right Now, by Barbara Ann Kipfer, one of the suggestions reads “Visit someone you haven’t seen for a while.
So when I was invited to the home of friends Pat and Pres, friends I had not seen in more than 20 years, the Karma was flowing.
Pat and Pres live in Bath, Maine, in a home that looks a lot like the home that I visited so long ago in The Netherlands. The same butcher block table was in the kitchen, the same cup filled with kitschy spoons, the same cozy couches, the familiar mugs. Even Pres was at the grill, barbequing German sausages and burgers, sipping a beer. It’s lovely to go back in time.
I knew Pat and Pres in Holland as Pat and I worked together at AFCENT International School and she took me under her wing when I first arrived to teach. I was 26, new to life abroad, and, truth be told, terrified. Pat invited me to my first Thanksgiving away from New England where I was enveloped by new friends, a cozy house and delicious food – much like the story goes of the first Thanksgiving. And it was lovely.
And it’s always lovely to re-join old friends and to remember why you became friends in the first place. Pat always creates warmth in her words, suggests a subtle, “Oh, don’t worry about that…”
When I arrived in Bath, I felt apologetic that my 13-year-old had not joined me. “Oh,” said Pat, “my kids never wanted to be with me when they were teenagers.” And I remember her youngest son as a teenager. He’s now a colonel in the army. In my mind, he’s still a lanky, talkative, funny kid in my senior English class. It’s hard to picture him a father of two living in Washington, D,C.
Life, indeed, goes rapidly – more so the older I get. So it’s wonderful to see friends from the past, to muse joyfully on shared memories and time. And when I spotted the stroopwafels on the table, Dutch cookies fresh from Holland, my joy was indescribable. I’d not had a stroopwafel since last century and boy, were they good – or echt lekker as the Dutch say.
And upon my departure from Bath, Pres gave me a package of stroopwafels to take home. I munched on those cookies all the way down 95 and experienced pure and utter bliss. Again, the good karma flowed, tasted wonderful and reminded me to always muse joyfully with dear friends, beautiful memories and stroopwafels.
May you muse joyfully into October and create some fabulous karma by visiting someone you’ve not seen for a while and sharing some cookies – it’s sure to create some joyful musings…
Susan Dromey Heeter, a writer from Dover who recently let her hair go au natural white, debuts her new column “Joyful Musings” at InDepthNH.org. Dromey Heeter is a secondary Spanish Teacher at Dover High School and the mother of two teenage daughters. Writing has been her passion since her English majoring days at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst. Dromey Heeter has lived in The Netherlands, Alaska and currently basks in all things New England, including the frigid winters. An avid swimmer, Dromey Heeter’s great passion is to bring back body surfing as most children have no idea how to ride waves without ridiculous boogie boards. She also writes about thrift shopping and all things frugal in a column called “Budget Vogue” for the New Hampshire Union Leader.