Where I am staying two woman friends are baking bread to give away as gifts to just about everybody they know in the area. They started early at around 7.30 am and now at midday it’s looking like all the dough has been made and most of it baked. They are obviously enjoying each others company and there’s much laughter and reminiscing. It is quite a production and they have been doing this faithfully for 24 years!
They have kept a diary which includes news of who’s around, children and then later as they have grown to adulthood, their boyfriends. Recorded – the cat eaten on the porch by a Mountain Lion, their resolutions which have remained much the same. More laughter and merriment. Their highs and lows shared in diary form now read aloud and remembered with sometimes laughter and sometimes serious and thoughtful silences. One woman remembers with a wistful glance. Not many birthings, lots of deaths though.
I’ve been reading a book recommended to me some time ago called The Gift by Lewis Hydes. Of course the ‘holiday season’ is a time of gift giving. I’ve been looking at ‘things’, gloves, boots, coats and the like and imagining letting my parents know what I’d like for Christmas. With no present giving parents alive now I may well purchase a few things on their behalf, with the money they left me. I’ll give myself gifts. I think that counts as gifts.
Now the gift tags are being written and the loaves bagged…Remember when I made my (very elderly) mother seal all of the bags?. The whole process is obviously brings so much for these two women before the bread reaches receiving hands and anybody and everybody in the house gets drawn into the process. Perhaps I’ll venture into the kitchen and start the clean-up. By the end of the day all the loaves have been delivered.