Saturday, February 27, 2016

by Laurel Halloran, from the Spice Shop Mysteries by Leslie Budewitz

Pepper and I met through tragedy, but our friendship has been pure joy. She worked for a law firm, doing HR, in the building downtown Seattle known as “the black box” or “the box the Space Needle came in.” Ripe, my deli and catering company, is on street level, and she came in a few times a week for lunch or coffee, or take-out. We got to be friendly—she’s very smart about food, and even smarter about people—but nothing more than that.

Until my husband was murdered. It was front page news, and still, years later, not solved. Half the people treated me like nothing had happened, and the other half acted like I had the Black Plague and tragedy was contagious.

Not Pepper. She sat and talked to me. Or listened while I ranted and raved. Or held my hand while I cried. Then she practically tripped over her husband with another woman, and it was my turn to offer a little comfort. She was staying with her friend Kristen, a dear, sweet cloud of a woman, in the fabulous old Capitol Hill house that they grew up in. One evening, Kristen’s husband and daughters were out at some father-daughter thing, and my son was at a friend’s house, working on a school project, so Pepper invited me up to watch a movie with them.

Now we call ourselves the Flick Chicks. We get together every Tuesday night to talk and eat and watch a movie. Well, sometimes we skip the movie, or talk right through it. We all have different tastes, which is great—I never would have seen “Bladerunner” if it weren’t one of Pepper’s favorites, and while I wasn’t in the mood for the romantic comedies Kristen loves when we first met, they’ve had enormous healing powers.

Friendship. That’s the spice of life.

Part of any groups of women—book club, bridge club, a knitting circle, or a meditation group? What’s the best part? 


Leslie Budewitz is the author of the Food Lovers’ Village Mysteries and the Spice Shop Mysteries—and the first author to win Agatha Awards for both fiction and nonfiction. The president of Sisters in Crime, she lives in northwest Montana with her husband, a musician and doctor of natural medicine, and their cat Ruff, a cover model and avid bird-watcher. 

Swing by my website and join the mailing list for my seasonal newsletter. And join me on Facebook where I announce lots of giveaways from my cozy writer friends.

18 comments:

  1. This is a great way to develop some back story you know that doesn't make it into the book. I'll be stealing that idea from you! Thanks for a great read in the Spice Shop Mysteries.

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    1. Thanks, Sharon! Much fun to meet you this weekend at Left Coast Crime!

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  2. In Threadville, I hold a storytelling and handcrafting evening once a week in my yarn shop, Tell a Yarn. We have great stories, camaraderie, and snacks. And sometimes we come up with ideas that help solve a murder...

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  3. I am not, I do volunteer at my kids' school so I have a small diverse group of women friends.

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    1. Volunteering is a great way to develop a community -- and as you say, quite a diverse one!

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  4. Great post, Leslie! I knit with my critique partners sometimes. Our yarn shop has a Stitch n Bitch group that I'd like to join some day!

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  5. I read Guilty As Cinnamon last week. I loved it.

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  6. Hey all! Leslie's hanging out at Left Coast Crime this weekend, so she may not be able to respond to comments for awhile. I love the "Stich and Bitch" group!

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    1. Thanks, Tracy! We missed you at LCC -- thanks for keeping an eye on the blog!

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  7. I am into Year 2 of my retirement, but still meet monthly with colleagues and friends. We head over to a local pizza buffet and dish the gossip on all topics political to comical. I have brought in some of my favorite books, and have converted two to the world of "cozy!"
    kat8762@aol.com

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  8. No, I am not a part of any group like that. I used to be part of a women's Bible study group and that was very nice. We had some very good discussions. But now we travel too much to visit family and spend time where my husband can fish (our cabin) and where my husband can golf (Arizona in winter) so it is a bit hard to be a part of a group. So I have Facebook and blogs like this. Thanks for letting me be a part!

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    1. Isn't it nice to have these online alternatives? Thanks for being part of this one!

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  9. Thanks to all of you for your comments, and to Tracy for keeping an eye on the blog while I was away at Left Coast Crime. Met a few of you there -- wasn't it a lovely con? (I've only got a dumb phone, and didn't take a laptop, so I was out of touch for a few days. But I had a manuscript with me!)

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