Happy to be together…naturally. People began arriving a little before 10 am. Les came in first and focused on the table settings and where the nametags were placed, commenting with an air of expectation about the number of people who would soon be arriving. When Ben arrived next, Les welcomed him, showing him his place and pulling out his chair for him. They chatted together about who was coming and where they would all sit. As more people arrived, they were each welcomed by those already at the table. They were served coffee or tea, and peanut butter toast with jam, as they continued to talk about where the late comers were, and were clearly happy and reassured as the table gradually filled up. The feeling of genuine contentment surrounded the group when we were all accounted for at the table and our community was full for the day.
Later in the morning a visitor arrived to pick up her husband’s paintings who was not known to most of the people. When she entered, one of the gentlemen stood to shake her hand and welcome her, and then another did the same thing, followed by a third.
Our daily regular activities create the consistent, compassionate, welcoming environment that contributes to the joy and shared camaraderie of being together.