Several years ago my cousin's young son asked if he could marry me. I told him he couldn't because we were family and you could only marry your family member if you lived in West Virginia. A few minutes later when John's dad came into the room I overheard him asking his dad if they could move to West Virginia.
West Virginia, I'm sorry I made jokes about you especially since I had never visited your lovely state. Actually while I can now say I've slept in your state for a couple nights, I still don't feel like I know you that well,see you just happened to be a central location for 4 friends coming from NY, VA, SC and MI. And while I still don't know you that well I did appreciate your hospitality. My friends and I had an amazing weekend together.
We stayed in your state's capital and while I seem to recall seeing the gold dome of your capital building as I drove into town, the remainder of our time was spent in a hotel room and then in a hotel lobby and then in a local cafe chatting, laughing and reminiscing with friends.
The four of us have not all been together for about 9 years, some of us have seen each other for short visits from time to time but for the 4 of us to be together for a weekend, I can only describe this feeling of complete contentment. I am inspired by my friends creativity, their love for their families and their passion for their friends and their faith. The only way this weekend could have been better is if we didn't require sleep, I know each of us wanted to eek out as many hours together as possible.
When we did venture of of the hotel we did find the coolest little bookstore, which included tin ceilings and exposed brick. While it was small it included all the best books you would ever want to read, each title that my friends and I came up with we were able to find. Along with some amazing greeting cards, I could have bought about 12 of them, but I settled on two. We all hope to return their next year for a book signing when our friend Eileen's book comes out.
And then as if God was smiling on us, across from the bookstore was the sweetest little cafe that had the best sundae I have ever had, a pumpkin sundae. Pumpkin ice cream, caramel, chocolate chunks, nuts and whip cream. The only thing sweeter than the ice cream was this precious time I was able to spend with my dear friends.
As I ventured home from this weekend, I kept thinking of things I forgot to share or to ask and was wishing the weekend could have lasted just a little longer. I'm already looking forward to next year and what I hope will be a new tradition in each of our lives.