Sweet potato cheesecake

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Days after my recent wisdom tooth removal, I am finally allowed out of the house today. I’m pretty sure it’s only an excuse for my boy to get some decent coffee though. He cautions me for the umpteenth time: no coffee. Sure, why not? Take all the fun out of life, why don’t you?

We walk into one of our regular cafés and immediately we spot a few familiar faces. Friends! Hugs and kisses, a swift flurry of questions about my oral health, random topics of conversation: this is better than any stuff a pharmacist could give me for my pain.

Then more customers walk in. Strangers. Well, maybe not exactly strangers. One comes over to say hi; he’s the baker who makes our favourite sweet potato cheesecake. He’s been busy and missing for months.

Another stranger drops by our table; a petite Japanese woman in classy threads. Then I recognize her, she’s my former yoga teacher – from a different lifetime almost. I tell her she looks ravishing.

More chatter, more happy smiles.

I forget about any pain. A friend from Singapore wryly observes, “What’s with you? You seem to know everyone here. I don’t know why any of us even like you.”

Laughing, I fake a punch at him. A text message comes in from another good friend who was here earlier (we’d just missed her): “The soundtrack for today is Joy.”

She’s right. What a wonderful day. The thing I have learned, if I have learned anything at all, is that we cannot predict the future, only live in the present and celebrate what we have. Friends. Dental health. Sweet potato cheesecake.

I think about strangers who had been kind to me in the past, and the lesson they taught me of always keeping an open heart and an open mind.

If you do, why, anything could happen.

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