Six minus One
I have not one treasured memory of the Oregon coast but one that is actually a series of visits. We were a group of six that traveled from Portland to Lincoln City for a Girls Getaway weekend at least once or twice a year. We all worked together at one time but as the years have flown by some of us have retired, some have moved on to other jobs and one we lost to cancer. Memories of those special weekends are something that I personally will cherish always. Not just for the activities that we did together but for the wonderful friendship that we have shared over the years.
During the day, we would spend our time shopping at the Outlet Mall and various shops throughout Lincoln City. Sometimes all together and sometimes in smaller groups but what never changed was our sharing time and fashion shows that followed each days shopping. We always found the best stuff, if someone missed a deal another would find that not-to-be-missed deal and back we would go the next day to get our own. Honestly, there were times that we barely had room in our cars for us! Then it was dinner together and oh my, what a good time that was.
I’d like to apologize now to all those that may have sat next to our group. Yes, we might have gotten a little raucous at times. Then we would return to our weekend place for dice and card games. That is when things would get really loud with giggles, laughs and the occasional shout of excitement that comes with the sheer pleasure of great company and the possibility of winning the huge pot of $3.00. After that it was time to head to the casino! Some stayed short, some stayed long, some won more, some won less but always a good time was had by all.
For breakfast, we’d spare others our exuberance and would stay put and make our own. It was certainly a sight to behold. Six women, working in a small kitchen doing the cooking, setting the table and cleaning up afterward, all the while sharing one bathroom and going about our daily routines for getting ready for the day’s activities. If everything in this world ran this smoothly and efficiently we’d all be better off for it.
Then the special weekend came that one of our group was too ill to attend. We spoke by phone to her and pledged that we would do our best to have just as much fun even if it was without her there. We did our best but understandably so, it wasn’t the same. She brightened a room, just by walking into it. Our first Girls Getaway weekend after we lost our dear friend was a journey we all needed to take whether we knew it at the time or not. We took flat gray stones on which we wrote messages of remembrance and celebrated her by placing them at our familiar, shared locations: favorite shops, the beach, our usual restaurant, and yes, at the casino. Every trip back, we smile about those stones as it is a secret that we share as friends.