Have you ever had a close friendship with someone but lost touch with them over the years? One of you moves away, gets too busy to write, or even call. You feel sad that all of those memories of shared experiences fade in your memory and evidently theirs too. So after a few years of trying to reconnect you both give up.
While my husband and I lived in New Orleans for eight years while he earned his degree and doctorate, we enjoyed meeting some great friends. We shared many wonderful times: eating together, going out together, and just sharing life events. We helped each other out in times of need while we lived near each other too.
After eight years my husband’s education was over and we moved away in search of jobs for him and a home where we could both work and have a family. After a teaching job in Mississippi, we moved back home to South Carolina for awhile.
One very unusual pair of friends we found in New Orleans was Bob and Macy. My husband and I liked both of these people who were at the time barely cognizant of each other. Bob, a music major from the seminary shared an off campus apartment with three other male seminary students across the tennis court from us in our off campus apartment complex. Bob was tall and thin, quiet, intelligent, creative, enjoyed sewing and cooking.
My husband met Macy, also a church music major at the seminary and we both enjoyed her vivacious personality. Macy was short, spirited, strong, decisive, intelligent, and logical. Well, my husband and I introduced Bob and Macy and they soon married.
The funny thing was that Macy was very much like my husband, and Bob was very much like me. When we got together Bob and I would discuss something in common and my husband and Macy would talk away about something involving politics or some other controversial subject. We shared a lot of evenings talking and eating with them.
After graduation each of us couples moved off and lost touch with each other somehow over the years.
Fast forward 8 years. My husband and I finally found a small church for him to serve in; I found a position as an ICU/CCU Registered Nurse. Soon we had baby boy. When our son was 6 years old, we went to a crowded popular amusement park in Charlotte about an hour from our Rutherford County home. It was about 2 in the afternoon and we had just gotten off of the ride that spins around in the water and gets you soaking wet.
As we were walking out of the ride’s exit something made me look to the right. About 100 feet away I saw the long and short figures of our old friends Bob and Macy! Between them walked a cute little boy about the age of our son! What are the odds of running into two long lost friends in a crowded amusement park?? We got together once more and then our work and families seemed to consume our time and we lost touch again.
After my husband’s death I went to see them and had a great time catching up. But yet again we lost touch until their son mentioned on Facebook that his mother was ill. She died a few years after my husband’s death.
Another couple we met in New Orleans was BK and PK. BK gave my husband an off campus job with computers. We soon found ourselves enjoying their company many weekend evenings after a 35 minute drive to their house. They enjoyed eating, talking with us and playing all kinds of table games, including Bridge.
BK and PK had a baby girl whom we enjoyed playing with for a few years until we moved away in search of a place where my husband’s education could be put to good use. We stayed in touch with them long enough to know that later they had a set of twin daughters.
They sent us pictures of their beautiful daughters in their Christmas cards for a few years but in the process of life we lost touch with them also.
When we heard of the devastation in 2005 of Hurricane Katrina, we knew we had to call them to be sure they were alright, assuming they had not moved. Fortunately they had gone west to stay with other friends and only their garage had suffered some water damage. We were greatly relieved.
I called them four years later to inform them of my husband’s death. And as with the other friends the lines of communication stretched and broke. They did send pictures of their three grown daughters and their families in their Christmas cards though which kept us in touch as we moved a few times.
Fast forward five years I was visiting my brother and my sister in law near Greenville, SC, which I only do about once every two months. My sister in law and I always enjoy shopping together and eating at the healthy food restaurant there for lunch.
We were having a nice lunch when all of a sudden one of B and PK’s daughters walked in and sat at a nearby table! What are the odds that this would happen in a small town near Greenville and at the same restaurant on the very weekend I just happened to be there?
Excitedly I got up and introduced myself. She instantly remembered me as part of the couple who gave their parents a wooden manger for Christmas when she was little. See story at https://joyful2beeblogs.com/2019/12/20/a-manger-of-memories/
She then gave me the exciting news that her parents were moving to Simpsonville the following year! Since their move I have enjoyed several visits with B and PK and was thankful to have their friendship after all of those years without them in my life.
Life is full of coincidences. But I think they have reasons for happening. Choose your friends wisely. Choose friends that you can reconnect with years later like no time had elapsed. Choose friends who have some of the same qualities and interests that you have.
Be a good friend and try to keep in touch even if it is just to wish them a merry Christmas. You never know when you will see them again; or when you will never see them again. These good dear friends reminded me of a verse from an old Girl Scout song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sMAxP-95yn4
Make new friends;
But keep the old.
One is silver,
And the other gold.