The Fearsome Four started years ago at the local Welcome Wagon. Sharon friended me. I met Bonnie through her because they were PTA parents of children the same age. Then we met Pat through Bonnie because they went to church together. The circles have widened through the years, a few people coming and going, but the original Fearsome Four has stuck like glue. We have birthed, married and buried together. We have dealt with aging parents, battled jobs, and fought cancer together. We used to play badminton, horseshoes, go to movies, have barbecues and celebrate Christmas dinners.
But age has slowed us a bit and oddly enough it is harder to get all of us together than it used to be. Our Fourth is often hamburgers on the grill and a trip to the local fireworks. But this year, the thoughts of the heat strangled us, and no one cares much for boom-boom anymore. So we gathered early before the sun could rise over the rooftop. We pooled our foods, whatever was handy, cooked some grits, and brewed some tea. It turned out to be a feast! But the true pleasure was grabbing 90 minutes or more together to sit outside under shade and to allow ourselves time to visit—like the old days.
The men had a table to themselves while women chattered together. It was truly peaceful and no firecrackers had started yet. So the air was not laden with smoke and the aroma of gunpowder. The rustling of a few tree leaves in the breeze was our only sound. Lovely, it was. Some eventually moved on to prepare for other events or to tend parents’ needs. Some felt like a pre-noon nap! But all enjoyed returning to be the Fearsome Four for just a short while this morning.
Happy Fourth of July!