I gather my gray handbag and cropped jacket. Sarah is back from Paris and today we are going to catch up on each others lives. It feels warm out for February. The sun is out, for a change, and the city can be seen as I walk down the hill to the cafe. Coco et Olive is buzzing with people. Students studying in a corner. Couple reading the paper. Young children enjoying a treat with mum and dad.
Picking up a coffee, I gaze down over the counter top. Elegant little glass jars filled with macrons, ginger snaps and marshmallows. The dainty lids rest over the sugary confections. Too perfect to be lifted. They are a living still life. I turn from the counter to where my coat rests. A toddler is trying to climb on the chair at my table. He giggles and his father entices him away with the promise of a bike ride home.
I open Globe and Mail paper, overflowing with news of the Olympics. Traffic diversions, parking restrictions, a population increasing overnight. It all seems far away. I feel unmoved by it as I sit safely behind the glass of the cafe windows. Sarah arrives; abruptly pulling me from my thoughts.
We settle in with coffees and try to recollect the last 4 months of our lives. How easy it is to forget what has happened to you. Where you have been. It is easy to remember what was not as good. That surprises me most. Picking up a fresh baguette from behind the counter, we exchange travel details. I feel myself coming to life as I think about the prospect of travel. But I also feel a sense of security. My family is returning to Vancouver. After four years of being together, it is even more difficult to be apart. Family isn't just blood. It's those who know you. Those who you break bread with. They are the ones on this journey with you - even if they leave for a little while.