Bookclub had come around again. This time I was co-hosting with my friend J-Bug at her house. We both live in the same area and the other members all lived on the ‘other side’ of town so we figured we’d see how the turnout was and pool resources. We made some yummy food and settled in.
J-Bug had come back from her trip home with a very sore neck. This night she was particularly unwell and the neck-brace she had been given seemed to only create more pain. She looked worse than the few days before when we’d sat and chatted as the children played.
Traffic was bad for some reason so a few people could not make it. B-Bug’s trip was about an hour and it is only about six kilometers away. So for those of us who were there, we chatted about all sorts of things as usual including the horrific pain J-Bug was in, and then we discussed our book.
Our latest read was Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan. A satire about life for the mega elite rich Singapore set. It promised to be funny yet we found it simply entertaining. We did not find any laugh out loud moments and agreed that while it disappointed in this way, it was basically a good pool side or holiday book. J-Bug had read the sequel and said that one was very funny and actually better than the first. Then we ate and drank a bit more.
We discussed what our next read would be. I had a list of some heavy type books, ones I had ready to go on my Kindle as they seemed interesting to me. J-Bug said she had started reading Anne of Green Gables because it was her friend’s mother’s favourite story. J-Bug recalled how the mother would always embrace J-Bug and call her Anne because of her red hair. The mother had recently passed away and this was like a tribute for her friend and that kind woman J-Bug had lovely memories of. We all sighed and said ‘Yes’. So that is our next book, or series. We will read as many of the books as we can and all wear our hair in plaits to our next evening.
J-Bug became very sick by the end of the night and as we left her house I looked at her and worried more deeply for my friend. The next day J-Bug said she was better than the night before but still very sick and then a few days later I found she had been put in hospital. Thinking it was just to get the strong pain killers and anti-inflammatories by IV, the standard tests the Doctor ordered discovered something so sinister it has rocked our world. So now my darling friend who is so kind, caring, nurturing, beautiful, smart, wise and a fabulous cook, has packed up the family returning home to begin treatment.
Sitting at her kitchen bench like I would do, those few days before, planning bookclub, we talked about her neck and how hopefully it will settle down soon. We talked about our precious children and I remember thinking how blessed those kids were to have a mother like her. Now I am sending prayers, positive thoughts and scheduling time to check on, and hang out with their beloved dog T-Dog, to keep him company, love him and reassure him until plans can be made to get him home. Noodles will play with him, and I will cuddle him and whisper love into his furry ears.
I am not in the habit of writing details of my friend’s personal lives, so that is all I will say on my friend for now. In the time I have been here in Manila, J-Bug is one of the few who put out her hand of genuine friendship and from this gesture I have found another glorious soul enter my world. So now I send all my love, positive thoughts and energy to her and her family and hope for a better day tomorrow.
In the words of Anne Shirley
“There is another bend in the road after this. No one knows what will happen” M. Montgomery, Anne of Avonlea