Today was quiet. I tried reading up one several things at once. It's been ages since I've had an extended roll of hours like this. Even in the noise the silence came through, dominant and it is welcoming as well as disconcerting. Especially for a person like me, who needs to engage when the hours of engagement have been put on paper and signed. Like a job contract?
It's not like I feel guilty, I just feel like I'm not being useful, when I'm supposed to be.
Anyway, as I sat and read the reports on renewable energy, art and restaurant reviews from pages across the world, I suddenly had a thought about friends.
If you look at the long list I have on facebook; I'd almost believe I'm a pretty popular person. The thing is, see, I'm not.
And all those people - the 200+ - are faces I know, some are good people I know, some are people I just met and know, others I just know and a handful, nay, a smidgen of those are friends.
I don't know if I can call them real friends. To be fair to them and myself, I really don't know what constitutes a good friendship. The bar is different for every single person.
For most it constitutes meaningful hours and experiences spent with a group, that over time learn of your nuances, internalise them and accept you for who you are. Sometimes they celebrate you.
For others, it's a lot deeper. It's those one or three people who know everything. Everything there is to know. They transcend family and become an inseparable part of you. Your hip, arm, heart, lung...
No, I don't have that with anyone.
For another set, it's people who make them laugh, shout, dance, have a good time.
For some more, it's the people who are at your door even if it's 3 a.m. and you just wanted to cry about that crappy date or horrible interview or worse, a break-up.
For me, I think friendship is a place where I can pick up from where I left off, even if there are 5 years between us. Not age, but time.
I have that with , Goomphy, Abe, Brother Bear, Absolut, Twister sister, Sandy, SKfan, Boukheir and V (holler out to the online buddy).
There are no judgements, no questions. Just a quick hello and straight to business. No frequent updates on email, or incessent (ILU ILU) phonecalls. No mush. No explanations. I don't know if they'd be at my door at 3:00 a.m. I don't know if they'd qualify as that missing organ, I don't know if they care whether I win or lose.
All I know, is when we meet or speak or chat or call - it could be years, months, days or hours but it is just like nothing happened since we last met. Nothing existed since that last ding!
We don't care about what we've achieved, we don't care about what we've not achieved. Well, I don't, so I can say that for sure. In my heart I know I speak for the lot of them. We're aware of our milestones, and a nod and grin speaks volumes between the lot of us. They celebrate your victory if you want to, though. Any excuse to share good vibes. Yeah, sure! Of course.
I do believe we care about each other very much, in an extremely twisted way. When we meet or communicate, it's always reminiscing about something that happened and defined us as people or creating an experience that we can add to the collection.
To most, in fact, anyone that have witnessed these episodes (lingo - epidose!), nothing out of the ordinary happens. In fact to most, it could easily be labelled boring. But magical things happen, you know. Things that even the said participants don't see, until we meet again and dredge it up. That's when our eyes widen and we know that we will never be the same since.
Like wine. Good wine.
Y'see anyone can be a part of this experience, and most of the times there are a few; we remember. But like catalysts, they remain the same, no change whatsoever. But then the effervescence they add - ooh boy! I would like to officially thank the 'bystanders' immensely. You just don't know what you've helped along. Visionaries the lot of you! Lol.
So...do I have friends? Haha! No I don't. But, I have experiencers.
And that for me is a reality, I will thank my good fortune - for - better or worse.