The joy of sociability

The welcoming conservatory at dear friends

Maybe it’s because of the deep grief we’ve experienced over the past fortnight, which compelled a serious introspection and a need to re-connect, but I felt somehow more sociable yesterday evening with friends than I have for some time. Or maybe it was the delightful prosecco and nibbles.

Regardless of why, it was good to catch up on each others’ news, to chat and think together, sharing experiences, joy and pleasure along with commiserations and sadness. The conversation almost turned maudlin at one point, as we realised that too many friends are no longer with us. But we set our faces firmly to the east and persevered with the prospect of new life ahead.

This is sociableness, isn’t it: when friends cajole us out of our hermitage and into the world of the living. Maybe I was more forthcoming, more giving of myself, because of the self-admonition that these blog entries have provoked, but more likely the social ambience was elicited by a combination of all of these things.

Each new day seems to balance the potential for joy as well as sadness or drudgery. I’d guess that we don’t appreciate the joyful possibilities as much as those that fall on the other side of the fulcrum. But I did appreciate the interlude of calm, and even made sure I had my phone ready to capture the welcoming room that was anticipated. Primed for joy, maybe that was why the evening felt so comfortable.

Usually I’m primed for hesitant shyness, wondering what to say, what to ask about, which topics are really off-limits or which are apropos. Mostly I feel like a stumbling shadow better suited to a quiet corner. But upon opening up, giving and receiving, I was able to enjoy the sociable atmosphere. I hope that my presence too was received better for being more interactive. The patience of good friends is really a treasure.

Well well well. Quelle surprise!

One response to “The joy of sociability”

  1. Larry, Kudos on today’s Joy. I had to look up the meaning of ‘Quelle surprise.’ So good to read that you are being surprised by what can be. I wouldn’t in any way minimize the degree of mourning & grief that you have gone through in recent days. I have noticed however that among the elderly the time spent on many rhythms of life are shortened compared to the younger generations. It’s not a hard & fast rule but I think that people my age & older want to spend our remaining days on earth living life to its fullest. We recognize that we have fewer days ahead of us than we have behind us. The 20 year old person has a different perspective on time than does the 70 year old. George Carlin had a humorous monologue on this topic.

    I really enjoyed reading your blog entry for today, The Joys of Sociability. I won’t go into one of my wordy explanations as to how I identified with much of your blog. Being an introvert I have relied on various external pressures to push me into social situations. I am always surprised at how much I enjoy myself after socializing with other people despite initial misgivings. I fear that others may feel that I am anti-social. Perhaps that is why I like your closing sentence, “The patience of good friends is really a treasure.”

    Like

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