Bring yourself. Take your time. The food will bring the minds together, as foreign as they might be. Friends will be found in a shared experience. Without need of history or gestures known. If you have a bit of hunger, bring that as well. We will not wear our masks here. Come with a word. Think about a story. Come to eat. We are far from peril and storm. We are here. We are here together. – The Kinfolk Manifesto
December 24, 2013. On Capitol Hill. East, toward Volunteer Park, twinkling with Christmas lights and smelling of smoke from a warehouse fire. We passed Will’s old house on the way there. The big mansion at Fourteenth and Aloha where he lived before he met me.
First there were six, then there was one more. Andrew, Kyle, Petra, Callie, Will, Allison, then Candace. Four of us had just rolled in from the Methow Valley. Three of us had been waiting in the city, there all along. Roast chicken. Toasted hazelnuts and squash on a bed of green and red from a million kernels of fresh pomegranate. Warm, fresh bread, a hearty loaf straight from a cast-iron skillet, dipped in oil that tasted like a wind blowing from San Francisco to Napa. The wine, the gåteau, the raspberries and mint. Twenty, thirty, forty, fifty years prior, each of us set out on our path to that very moment: from New York, Maryland, Colorado, Australia, California and Arizona. We started out scattered across the world as many, but ended up converged at a table as one. One in our humanity, our conversation. In our laughter, good friends and good food.