What I Learned Making Lunch for an Old Friend

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Julia and I have been friends since sixth grade. For me, that is a long time. I have changed in many ways both measurable and not–I have grown older, I have grown what may be considered wiser, and I have changed my hair colour at least nine times. She has changed too–grown more solemn at times, and louder at others, established a comfortable and enviable circle of friends who support each other.

She and I are the kind of friends who return to each other with constancy. We were best friends once, but we’ve both evolved. Not in a bad way, and not away from each other–just on different paths. I can only speak for myself, but I know I value her friendship more than most others. We find each other when we need each other, which recently has been more so. She goes to school in Oregon, and I in New York, but both of us have felt the keen pangs of homesickness and longed to go back. Back to what, I’m not sure, but both of us have wanted to go back to something–sometime–different from where or when we are.

Today she is coming over for lunch, and I’m making lunch for the two of us. I have a gluten free blueberry clafoutis (kla-foo-tee) in the oven, and it’ll be ready in about half an hour. I made a small pitcher of passion tea lemonade with raspberry, and there are gluten free pretzels with a peach chipotle mustard dipping sauce. I’m making quesadillas with peach salsa for the main course, and I might even make a salad.

For me, sharing my baking and making is a large part of sharing myself. I am intensely vulnerable when I share the results of a new recipe, hoping for approval and joy from my friends. So far they have been wonderful, trying everything–even when my meringues fell flat the next day and tasted of egg whites in the worst way. I am incredibly lucky to have the friends I have made, both the new friends I have found at college and old friends like Julia.

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