Much like last year, I’m so excited for Mathilde to visit our house that I get a headache just thinking about it. We’ve known each other 23 years, and, by miracle, our friendship is both acclimatized to our adult lives and as full of energy and curiosity as it was when we met in our first year of secondary school.
She comes bearing gifts: seeds for the garden, dyke poetry, David Sedaris. She knows what I like. We eat, this time around I’ve kept it simple with dishes from the traiteur and not ten separate homemade recipes of intricate delicacies. We talk about what teaching means to her and Anja. We play with Lemonade.
As a friend, Mathilde is very easy to love. Our times together eventually always bring us back to our shared emotional outlet: making music. “I’m nervous to sing around you, Zinzy” she says, but her voice sounds beautiful, warm, and exactly what my piano calls for. When I think of “blue-eyed soul” I think of Mathilde’s voice. We tell each other Anja and I will make it down south this year, and we’ll go for côte de bœuf in Maastricht. I can’t wait.