On the weekend, I was part of a gathering of friends. It was a group where enough people were friends of enough other people that the entire group, some new to each other, became just one gathering of friends. There was an easy exchange of good will and interest that relaxed us all while energizing us. We were not all thinking the same things, but somehow we were thinking together.
I work hard at community building. From time to time people have wondered, quietly or pointedly, if it was the best way to spend limited resources. It wasn't always clear that we were moving toward a harvest: sometimes it was more like trying hard to hit a moving target. Patience is not always a virtue and it is always difficult.
But, from time to time, we are a gathering - a group of friends coming together from different lives and paths to share ideas and laughter and chocolate. And it is good.