It was a wonderful afternoon by the river. We'd all met up after work and were letting off some steam. Once again we'd relied on Ariel to bring the food and we were kicking ourselves because we knew that Ariel would be hard pressed to show up to her own funeral on time.
Daphne, always a joker, amused us with stories of office politics and bureaucratic mayhem. She and her cubicle mate Bob spent their morning planning a corporate coup only to find that they'd been beaten to the punch. Their company had been bought out over lunch in a hostile takeover and in a synergistic frenzy, they found themselves downsized by closing time.
Poor Ariadne spent the afternoon in the Human Resources Department at her company having been accused of indecent exposure again. She tried to explain that synthetics just weren't made like they used to be and hers kept unraveling at the most inoportune moments. Besides, she complained, what was the big deal? They were just breasts, lots of people had them.
Celia was in a foul mood after having been overlooked for another promotion. She'd done everything she could think of to get that new position. Everything but sleep with Ophelia Drowning, her department head. That was just not going to happen anytime this century. Ophelia was a blonde and Celia, while not the pickiest of women usually, had a phobia about blondes. She'd had it ever since Brunhilde Frostwell tried to drown her in a bathroom sink in high school. We'd told her a hundred times not to use the bathroom near the Home Ec room. Xena Amphipolis lurked in there when she was skipping classes. But Xena wasn't in there that afternoon and when Celia came out of the stall and ran into Brunhilde, Brunhilde mistook her for one of Xena's gang and tried to off her. It was a turf thing. Luckily, Miss Artemis, our P.E. teacher came in and saved Celia in the nick of time.
Penelope hadn't eaten since breakfast and was getting irritated. That was nothing new. The fact that she'd run three cars off the interstate on the way to our gathering prompted Daphne to hand over an apple she was saving for later. No one liked it when Penelope got low on blood sugar.
Ariel showed up in a whirlwind, complaining about traffic and the sun being in her eyes the whole way. We enjoyed a wonderful meal. Ariel is flighty, but always puts a remarkable spread together. We live for our get togethers each week. It's such a relief to be with friends.
I was looking at that bit of image I cropped from a painting. These ladies just seemed so casual and relaxed and I was wondering what they were up to.
I did say "cropped", so if you'd like to see it whole, surf on over to the Smithsonian's site, which is where I came by this lovely Meryman painting. Annoying, but true: you can't link to their database, you have to make a bogus selection on their site first (that gets you started), then cut and paste the link below (that will get you to the site) back into your address window and it will bring up the image. Simple, no? Click here.