For a few months I've been part of a growing, changing group of women brought together by Lynn who seems a natural born facilitator. She has invited people she's met over the last six or eight months, all of whom are involved in some creative activity -- but of widely different types -- to meet once a month with some of their creations. Because we began meeting at a restaurant called The Chat House (which encourages groups like ours to meet there) we became The Creative Chatterers.
However mostly we were strangers to one another with Lynn as our Mother Hen. One of our group suggested "Getting to Know You" exercise she used in her career as a teacher. Each of us were given a brown paper lunch bag and told to put in five items that tell something about who we are. The bags were bunched on the conference table and opened one by one, each time by someonw other than the bag's owner. As a group we looked at the items, passed them around, made conjectures such as "this looks like a grandchild", "this person likes sailing", etc. Then at a count of 3 we pointed at the person we thought it might be from those clues. Often we guessed wrong because we hadn't yet shared many of our interests nor talked much about our families.
Then the person whose items we'd looked at told about them, what they suggested about her and added whatever other information she wished. Thus we learned a great deal about one another but the exercise was not intrusive. Each person revealed what she chose. It was a fascinating gathering; we all have insights into one another we would never have had before. One person revealed that, as an adult, she had seen her first grade evaluation which said, "pathologically shy". Yes, she had been very, very shy and still has moments of shyness (although the rest of us did not know that) but she felt that note then led other teachers to treat her a certain way in school (perhaps not call on her often). Other revelations were surprises. A friendly woman announced that she's an introvert and suggested others of us might also be as many creative people are -- and we agreed. So it went. We were only sorry some of our group were unable to come to the meeting.
The mid-70s are a surprise! Part of me remains in the 50s -- age, I mean, not decade of 20th century. It's a joy ride, new experiences land in my lap and I've become a better quilter, poet, writer than I expected. It's a rich life for a person never rich financially. Hey, this is what the mid-70s are like!