It was late afternoon by the time I had my daily walk, and the sun was setting in Tampa, a cool breeze chilled me as I walked the scenic River Walk past the palms and the dramatic clouds over the tall buildings. Most of my day was spent indoors at a writing conference, AWP18, and I was so happy to be swinging my arms outdoors by a rippling river and breathing fresh air.
I woke this morning, fortunately in Tampa, having flown here a day early to avoid a late winter snow storm. At home, my family woke to trees, broken and toppled all over the driveway and yard, covered in heavy, wet snow. I imagine the dogs trotted around the yard with my husband and daughter as they cleaned up for hours.
The writing conference was stimulating and full of interesting conversations and connections and lots of networking, but the sweet spot of my day was the first hour spent in deep, lingering conversation with an old and very dear friend who lives in Tampa. She's a friend since my time living here, a friend for twenty years. In the coffee shop where we talked, talked, talked I could have stayed all day, right there, catching up, leaping from one long story to the next. This is the joy and satisfaction I fed on all day: love. A friend for life who lives too far away but, when the moment allows and we can dive deep, it's as if we've never been apart.
Today, on International Women's Day, I'm grateful for all the women who are my dear, dear friends, each friendship like a new world.