Monday, May 19, 2008

Ahhh, the unexpected houseguest! I had just sat down at the computer yesterday afternoon when I caught the Email: "I'm in your neighborhood! I don't have your phone number! I may just stop by!" And then, moments later, a reunion of sorts. She left after a few minutes, wanted to go to the Catholic church down the street, and then returned a couple hours after that, grocery bags in hand, cooked us dinner and ended up staying the night. Some houseguest!

Personally, I like an unexpected houseguest. If your life is in balance, you can handle dropping everything for a night to enjoy some surprise company. I never really thought my life was in balance, actually, so I must be doing better than I thought.

She's been living in Japan. Her husband flies F16s and is coming up on his second deployment. She's an artist, and will be doing the chalk drawings at the I Madonnari Street Painting Festival at the Santa Barbara Mission this weekend. We fired up the barbeque, uncorked some wine, threw some shrimp on some skewers and let all those hanging obligations just fall off for the night. What a pleasure, on a warm summery night, to hear stories from a long lost friend. And of those, stories of art and faith, war and peace.

This morning the beck and call of ignored responsibilities has reached into the higher decibels. I must be on my way.