Dinner for six
Martha Zimet, Kay Flaxa and Ruth Ifversen arrive in shiny red automobiles. Georgia Fulstone arrives in a pearl white Lexus, a vehicle I dearly covet. Although the vehicle color ratio is lopsided, it’s of no concern. What gives me true concern is the five to one female to male ratio. The underlying plan for the evening is to instigate a meeting of five extraordinary women.
As soon as we gather around the table, I propose a toast: “To the five women and one man seated at this table,” clink glasses and start serving.
The repartee is mindful of biblical days when a group of women would be winnowing wheat or gathered around a well filling their jugs with water. So what role do I play in this scenario; a shepherd, a pilgrim, perhaps Moses? I needn’t have worried. Feminine instinct prevails.
The walls of formality crumble, each member taking her turn, sharing, casual observations, deep insights, worries, or cherished memories.
Sharing comes easily to everyone except Kay. Kay, dear sweet Kay, scarcely speaks a word, allowing her delicious homemade caramels speak for her. Kay is a heroic “listener.”
Openness, honesty and sincerity flow unfettered by competition. It’s my privilege to be an observer. Georgia, who has endured long hours digging through tons of memorabilia for the new Dr. Mary exhibit at the Historical Site in Wellington is raring to go. After all, she was Dr. Mary’s daughter-in-law, and has a healthy admiration for one of Nevada’s pioneer doctors. Dr. Mary graduated from college in 1919 and centered her practice in a 10×10 room in her home in Smith Valley. Georgia was there when Dr. Mary climbed out of bed in the middle of the night to go to a far-flung ranch to fix a broken bone or deliver a baby. Those were days when you cranked the telephone and shared a party line. “Would you all please get off this line ladies; I’ll call and let you know if it’s a boy or girl when this child is born,” she would insist.
Martha, the soft spoken one, tiptoes into the conversation. She recently broke free from Silicon Valley; she now resides in Mason Valley. When something isn’t working right and a replacement isn’t readily available, she invents an alternative, sticks a patent on it, logs it on the internet and sells it. “It’s what I do,” she purrs softly.
Ruth served in the Foreign Service for many years. Hearing her dig through her memories of West Africa is exquisite. She who has lived behind the headlines is a master story teller.
The evening unrelentingly draws to a conclusion. What a “council” of warriors they are. They are fighters for accomplishment, achievement, fulfillment and savoring happiness. They are living the lives they were intended to live. I may have provided the Dutch Oven pot roast for dinner, but these dear ladies have given us friendship and joy. G’night.
Ron Walker can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org