In honor of my father, whose 86th birthday we celebrated yesterday, I just have to tell you about a special group of men. They call themself AFTERGLOW. My father is one of them.
They meet for lunch on Fridays at the same time at the same bar/restaurant.
Most are in their eighties. They went to high schools together, colleges together, fraternities together, worked together. They are manly men. They were and still are active in their community. They have decades of stories to tell and many they prefer not to tell about each other. 🙂
These men have established friendships thicker than blood. They have the most precious tradition. They have a wine rack built to hold a favorite bottle for each of their members. It also holds a silver chalice for each member. Each chalice is engraved with AFTERGLOW, each person’s name, and their birthdate. When a member passes on from this earth, these men gather together. They open the deceased member’s bottle and join together to celebrate their friend’s life sharing tales. Then they fill each chalice from the deceased’s bottle and make a toast to their friend. And rumor has it if the bottle was no good they can spit on their grave.
I had the privilege to recently sit in on one of their get togethers. Watching these men tell of heartfelt memories of yesteryear was so touching. Especially being men. They have been and continue to be there for one another through good times and bad. Just like iron sharpens iron, they keep each other sharp.
I can assure you that long after these men are here on earth, the glow of their friendships will continue to touch lives through the sharing of their stories by future generations.
Let’s all strive for those kinds of friendships here on earth. Let’s be there for each other in good times and in bad. Let’s live out our senior years leaving an afterglow for all the world to see.
17 As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.
Love and laughter,