I love this painting. I won a blue ribbon in a regional art show with it. Sadly, it is no longer in existence. It was lost in Hurricane Katrina. But it lives on as one of the prints that I offer, as does several of my other paintings that were lost in the storm. That brought to mind what this painting is all about, friendship.
Now, as June progresses into hot days this is a scene I have seen my whole life. People that find a spot on the bank of a water source, and sit with a pole and catch fish. At least that is the obvious goal., but to me it is the southern form of meditation. Decompression.
That's not what I saw or felt when I saw these ladies. For these ladies, it is all about the conversation. It's all about spending time together. It's all about the laughter. It's all about the friendship.
In life, most friendships are established through some form of shared experience. Your early growing up years of family, neighbors, and school. It might be through shared passions, hobbies, or work. Then it is marriage and children. It is about something that brings you together for a common goal or experience.
But then there are The Friends. The Friends that show up. They show up for the good times and the bad times. They are the Yin to your Yang.
They are the friend who shows up at the hospital without being asked to come. The one who sits with you in the hall as your father takes his final breaths. While sitting beside you she says, "I love how your father calls me Shug!" Across the hall a relative says, "yeah, I love how he calls me Shug, too." Your friend turns to look at you in astonishment and says, " I thought I was the only one he called Shug?" You look back at her and say, "he calls everyone Shug." As she looks at you with a shocked and surprised expression, we both bust out laughing. As we sat there and I laughed through my tears, I felt my father's spirit pass down the hall. As he passes by, he looks back, smiles, and says, "Bye Shug!"
The Friend that shows up. As you stand in the hot September sun, covered in mud and wearing white shrimper boots. Washing mud off everything left after your house went underwater, your friend shows up with three boxes of new shoes (to this day she has never said where she got those new shoes). One of those boxes had pink, leather flip-flops. Tears come to you eyes as you smile at those pink shoes and realize that there is life after white shrimper boots. You see a glimmer of light at the end of that long hot tunnel.
These are just a few examples of The Friends that I have in my life. The Ones that can finish your sentence, read your mind, and see the same humor in something going on and laugh together, without saying a word. The One who says "our two brains make one great whole." Or The One who says a true friend can "go into your refrigerator without asking permission". I heard a motivational speaker once say that we are lucky if we have five of these kinds of friends in a lifetime. The Ones who you are safe to be your good self with or your bad self with. They are there to listen, to laugh, to cry, to talk you down, or to talk you up. They can even tell you when you are wrong, but always with your best interest at heart, and with love.
There have been a lot of popular television shows about just these kinds of friendships; the Lucy to Ethel, the Andy to Barney, the Archie to Edith, the Seinfeld to Costanza, the Sheldon to Leonard, the Yin to Yang.
I wish everyone this kind of friendship. I am very lucky because I think I have more than five of these friends. Some of them I may not have talked to in years. Yet, when we reach out, we instantly connect to The Friendship. So please enjoy these ladies and their moment of connection in a shared pastime. The original painting floated out with the flood waters of Katrina. But I like to think these ladies came to rest on the banks of the bayou across from my house. If I listen carefully, I can hear the laughter as they enjoy each others company. Passing the time of day with a little friendly conversation, or as we say in the south, talkin' a little trash.
So today I share with you my painting, now only in print form, Talkin' Trash.
Thanks for connecting,