Monday, April 23, 2007

Friends I Didn't Know I Had

This whole retirement process is full of lessons. One of those lessons is the fact that there are several people within just a few years of my age at work who may become better friends in retirement that we have ever been at work.

Two of my colleagues took me out to lunch today. This was not one of those make-a-salad-together lunches. Instead they gave me my choice of restaurants and I picked Sonoma on Capitol Hill. I’ve never been disappointed with anything I ordered there and it seemed like the perfect day to escape from Suitland into real civilization.

I had never realized just how much I had in common with the woman. She’s married to a computer-math type who does research for the Army. She has two kids who are still finding themselves. She loves to garden. She loves to shop. She loves to travel. We made a deal to keep the personal relationship we started today going after I leave. She may be soon to follow me out the office door as she turns 60 later this year.

The man in our lunch trio was someone I have known for years, having worked with him in the international area of my agency. He is also a musician, having introduced me to the chamber music group at GWU.

Lunch at Sonoma was fabulous. I had a rock shrimp risotto. She had the cavatelli that I have enjoyed my last two visits to Sonoma. And he had barbequed octopus – absolutely delicious. I suggested that I treat us to a bottle of wine, which they refused to let me pay for but were happy to enjoy with me.

The best part was that because of some mix-up in the kitchen which delayed our order, we were presented with three of the best desserts I have ever eaten on the house!

Our gourmet lunch took us away from the office for 3 hours. I cannot imagine a better way to spend much of my 9th to the last day of work.


Blogger GEWELS said...

How wonderful to find new friends as your time is winding down there.
sounds like a perfect way to spend an afternoon.
And knowing that it is not simply work that you have in common is a nice basis for a long-lasting friendship. See, another new adventure with surprising new characters.

6:22 AM  
Blogger Pauline said...

It's these "happy moments" as my daughter and I call them that make life an glad you are collecting them to offset the stress work is causing you.

6:27 AM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

A nice "rainbow" to find in your day! And you didn't need to worry about getting fired after taking 3 hours off to eat!

Here's to lunching with friends in your retirement! See, you're getting in the mode already! Only a few days to go!

8:13 AM  
Blogger Reya Mellicker said...

What a wonderful report. Like I said in my email, let your retirement include many many many many many wonderful lunches with people you love to share time with. BRAVO!!

8:17 AM  
Blogger Barbara said...

All -- Thanks for your continued support. The discovery of this handful of new friends is indeed a silver lining to the cloud surrounding my leaving. Here's to silver linings and to new and old friends!

10:39 AM  
Blogger Richard said...

Better than Enemies I didn't know I had.

12:13 PM  
Blogger Barbara said...

Richard -- I certainly don't need any more enemies!

12:57 PM  
Blogger Richard said...

There is a Yiddish saying, A good enemy is better than a bad friend.

6:10 PM  
Blogger Kristin said...

The lunch sounds amazing. I am glad that life, and work, continues to surprise and please you.

10:43 PM  
Blogger Golden Silence said...

Our gourmet lunch took us away from the office for 3 hours. I cannot imagine a better way to spend much of my 9th to the last day of work.

I agree...nothing like a nice lunch to get your mind off the stressful stuff!

Congratulations on your retirement. Looking forward to you finding new life discoveries each day after.

1:10 PM  

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