After more than 10 years and hundreds of eMails, cards, phone calls and musical tapes, I met Jody in the Real World. I drove the cross-state route in anticipation.
She is exactly as I had perceived and it was as if we have known each other forever. She invited a friend to join us for a sumptuous meal that evening. In addition to the delicious crab meat and baby spinach dinner salad, we enjoyed a side of broccoli covered in melted provolone accompanied by a wonderful warm loaf of foccacia bread. There was vanilla ice cream with fresh strawberries for dessert. Then the 3 of us solved all the domestic economic problems at hand, laughed and talked. Wonderful!
The condo she has rented for winter is in a tropical paradise! There is a wonderful view of the pool just beyond a lush lawn shaded by huge oak trees. I woke early enough to witness the grace of an early morning swimmer gliding the length of the big pool, a rhythmical slap of hand against water for music. The scene was made perfect by a brilliant orange sunrise.
Later in the morning, Jody took me to Venice where we explored the quaint shops there and lunched on ratatouille crepes and French onion soup alfresco. I consider food especially elegant when not even the spell checker can manage the food names!
We bought each other little surprise gifts, given at the last minute, just before I reluctantly started my journey home. I wished to stay longer and enjoy her company and explore the surrounding area but still, it was a wonderful adventure!