Curious Community

Saturday night we were blessed to pass perhaps the most singularly curious evening my wife and I can remember in some time.  Given the number of people in and out of our lives in any given week, this is no small statement.

On the tail end of a vacation we spent a night in a place described as a Euro-mansion.  It was massive – 7+ bedrooms in the main building.  Library, bar, music room, formal dining room, entry hallway, massive kitchen, full basement – not  to mention a separate cottage rented out to two people.  Built nearly 100 years ago by an apparently eccentric person, this home was unique not only  architecturally and historically and decoratively, but first and foremost for the people there.

We arrived and entered through the main gates to find a band warming up and people wandering around the grounds.  We though these were  other AirBnB guests but it turned out they were there for an impromptu fundraising event that showed up for the afternoon and evening.  We eventually met the owner and her late-teen/early 20’s son and daughter, along with at least five of the other people who live  more  or less full  time on the premises.  The connections are some family, some professional,  some simply coincidence of time of life and other matters.

Most of them seemed pretty quiet and introverted, with the exception of one obviously extroverted woman.  After perusing the truly stunning bar they had, I offered to put together a small cocktail tasting after we returned from dinner.  The offer was eagerly accepted.  I put together small tastings of three different drinks – my Almond Tequila mainstay, a poor variation of a Manhattan using questionably ancient vermouth and equally questionable vanilla-flavored bourbon, and a simplified version of a Melon Ball (Midori, orange juice, vodka) that omits the vodka.

We sat together for over  an hour, sipping the drinks, sharing stories and a bit of background.  We learned a lot about these people that we never would have had there not been a pretext to sit down together.  There’s a tentative offer for me to return to provide bartending services to a private movie screening in the near future, which of course means an opportunity to meet more people, hopefully have  more  conversations, and ultimately hope to build more relationships where I can be shown how to love my neighbor and show them Christ’s love.

I’m still processing the evening and all of the nuances and dynamics.  But I pray there will be further opportunity for to build relationships with these curious community of friends and family.


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