Monday, October 10, 2011

Thanksgiving Month, Day 9: Hidden Valley

I've mentioned before that all the tables at Nilgiris Tea House have names. The little table for two tucked behind the piano is called Hidden Valley - the only table that can't be seen from the kitchen.

That's the official name; this one table in the TH is actually called more often by its unofficial name, "Komorowskis' Table", even when Joan and Rick are not the guests seated at it!

These two have meant so much to me over the years, with their quiet friendship and steady presence in the TH. Rick is the one who sent me the pictures of the deer in their backyard a while ago. Joan is the one who fell in love with the books of one of my favourite authors, Georgette Heyer. She also got me reconnected with Neil, an old friend from India days - the Welsh connection prevails again!

Theirs is a magical love story, and it continues day by day. All of us who work at the TH have commented at one time or other how "Mr and Mrs Komorowski always enjoy talking to each other and just being together - they never run out of things to say and they still laugh together!", as one of them put it not long ago. It always moves me when I see them walking up to the TH and his hand is gently resting in the crook of her neck - such a tender gesture of long-time loves.

This is the kind of loyalty to the TH the two of them show: they have a sort of understood reservation for Sunday evening dinner; but one Sunday we got a phone call at about 4 p.m.: "Karyn? This is Rick Komorowski. I'm sorry we won't be able to make it this evening. We were in Red Deer and Joan slipped and broke her wrist. I'm calling you from the emergency room ..." Who else would take the trouble to call in a situation like that? Their unfailing courtesy and kindness extends to all those who have the great good fortune to know them.

So on the day we celebrate the TH's thanksgiving I want to say Thank you, Joan and Rick, for your friendship and the quiet influence you have on my life and on the lives of my kids in the TH. In this day and age of people not staying together - or if they do, of not really having much to say to each other after a while - you are an inspiration and a great example of what true love can and should look like.

And as you say when you leave on Sunday nights, "See you next Saturday?"


  1. Magic happens in making the everydays special, in climbing the mountain peaks and in sharing the hidden valleys with grace and tenderness. Congatulations to the Komorowskis on the weeks and years of sweet romance!

  2. Just "read the leaves" and are honoured to be featured on your blog. You are much too kind to these two old romantics!!


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