I have some friends now that I’ve never seen. Like Maria, who is a friend of a friend here who hooked me up with her treasured overnight babysitter. She’s back visiting the States so I hope to meet her sometime. And, there are some friends I never knew I had. Like Patti and Robin (from the U.S.) who I’d never met, who dropped off sleeping bags and towels when the movers were a week late. And, Emma (from England) across the street who loaned us real mattresses, blankets, and champagne glasses for the chilled bottle she had for us. What kindness. What a blessing.

And, then there is Victoria. On a dreary morning, while I was trying to serve Nora and Jack breakfast on a cardboard box, Victoria showed up at our door.  She is a friend of Emma’s and also from England.  She had heard from Emma that our movers were very late and we were living in an empty house.  So, Victoria shows up with a camp table with attached chairs, a rucksack filled with real plates and silverware, games for the children, a fresh baguette and more treats.  Slack-jawed, I watched her set up the table, throw on a checkered tablecloth, and set up the goods. “I moved here ten months ago and I know how it feels,” she said. Then she offered to drive me to the home supply store called “Toom” to load up on trashcans, lightbulbs and other necessities. Perhaps it was a natural thing for her to do but it meant the world to me.  It still does. And, it didn’t matter that it took us two separate trips to find Toom.  The first time, she drove us in circles for an hour and I think I was so happy for a new friend I hardly noticed.  Victoria came back a couple days later, with more precise directions, and we made it to the store and even had time to sit down for coffee and a pretzel.

We finally located the alleged six-year-old girl down the street.  She exists!  And, she and Nora have really hit it off. They are in camp together the next couple weeks and will also attend the same school. Pretty soon Jack will have a few two-year- old buddies too when he starts attending 2 mornings a week of preschool. In the meantime, he so happy outside on his scooter.


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