Old Friends, New Friends.

I hope that you enjoy reading this post on the weekly Friday Loose Bloggers Consortium where six of us write on the same topic. Today’s topic was chosen by yours truly. The five other bloggers who write regularly are, in alphabetical order, gaelikaa, Maxi, Paul, Shackman, and The Old Fossil. Do drop in on their blogs and see what their take is on this week’s topic. Since some of them may post late, do give some allowance for that too!

To start with, I am posting this very early in the morning as I am leaving shortly on a week-end trip with my old friend to his farm house for some male bonding and to catch up with all the news from him post his divorce and partition of assets.  I shall be delayed in visiting other LBC posts and leaving my comments.  Please bear with me.  I shall do so immediately on return to base.

Last month when I was in Chennai, I had gone to visit an old friend Vela who has been my friend for over sixty years. He and his family are as good as my own family and for me visiting them or having them come over to my place is always a big treat. When we meet infrequently, we simply start off from where we left off the last time and the January meeting was no different. Since it was a holiday, all the children and the grand children were also there and I had a marvelous time with them and was sad to leave them in the evening.

During the latest class reunion a couple of week-ends ago, I again met with some old friends but the meetings were not of the same intensity or involvement as they were with Vela or will be with Tej the coming week end. Friendships with classmates fall into a different category and irrespective of the duration of the friendship, the closeness is of a different order all together. Pleasant nevertheless.

Compared to my friendship with other older friends my friendship with Ramesh with who I had gone to see the movie on Monday, is of recent origin but a close one nevertheless. We enjoy bantering and doing things together.  Ramesh is very helpful and is forever trying to do things for me which at times can get to be irksome.

When a relatively new friend and a friend who has been a close friend for decades get to meet each other through a mutual friend, some interesting things happen as it did when Ramesh and my friend Anil met up recently in Pune.  Ramesh found that he had mutual friends with Anil and the world got around soon enough with various friends of Anil asking him how come he got to meet Ramesh.

I have found another interesting thing about friends.  While I have close friendships with a few, none of them have the same intense friendships with each other even when they have met thanks to me.  I wonder if this is universal.

On the other hand, I know of groups of friends who have been friends from childhood who continue to be close knit friends and I envy that kind of bonding.  During my recent visit to Chennai I was asking all the people that I met whether they are in touch with friends from school and all said that they were not.  It is also possible that since all of us had been fairly mobile post schooling, we lost out on strong friendships of people who stayed put in one place. For instance, I have only a few very close friends like Ramesh where I now live and all my other friends live in other cities.  It is odd that I have lived in Pune for twenty three years and yet have so few close friends!

I have made some very good friends thanks to the blog world in which I have met them and those also have developed over the last few years into strong bonds, but of a different kind than the bonds that I have with my real life flesh and blood friends.

Friendship is funny business alright.

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22 Responses to Old Friends, New Friends.

  1. Anil Heble says:

    Over the last three days about 50 of us with wives in tow met to celebrate 50 years of our commissioning as officers in Indian Defence Forces. We were 230, then between age of 16 & 17, who joined National Defence Academy in 1960, Over the next 4 years we were trained together. Since then wars, terrorism & natural causes have accounted for over 35% of attrition.
    We the survivors, all in our 70’s or thereabouts now, in an instant shed 50 years of age over those three days. It is difficult to describe those three frivolous infantile days, much to the surprised dismay of respective wives. Friendship is a mild word for what happened.
    Sanity, sobriety and age was only restored almost as instantly over a sombre wreath laying ceremony paying homage to all those who no longer walk with us today.

    Thank you, Ramana, for your apt and timely blog.

    Anil

    Wouldn’t know

  2. Ursula says:

    Friendship is indeed ‘a funny business’. Sometimes sad. I am a loyal friend. I will look up, find them – if they are not felling trees in Canada – and reconnect after decades. And it’s just like yesterday. LSF (longest standing friend) jokes that we go back to the sandpit. And he is right. What a gang we were. Yet, only two survivors. (in terms of friendship). Him and me. The two most unlikely.

    As to ‘real life flesh and blood friends’: You don’t need to meet in the flesh to form a bond. Believe me I am flesh and last time I cut myself I bled.

    U
    Ursula recently posted..Inception

    • Funny you have brought loyalty into it. It had not occurred to me to include it in my post, but I think that it would rate high on the basis for long lasting friendships.

  3. Maxi says:

    You are blessed to have your friends and to be able to spend time with them, Rummy.
    blessings ~ maxi
    Maxi recently posted..The Bull Who Would Be Friends

  4. shackman says:

    Ursula nailed it -I do similar things and I agree 100% about not meeting in person. We differ in that my core groupf of friends growing up are still just that. I’m regularly in touch with oneof them and through he and his wife the others. Of that group there is an airline pilot, a dentist, an architect, a retired civil servant and a retired CEO and an engineer (electronics ). That causes new “friends” to ask what happened to me that I am merely a copywriter. Oh well.

    • I would not use the word merely so lightly. New friends are unlikely to know the full background. I can tell you from the bottom of my heart that I have a great deal of respect for you as a person and as a friend.

  5. tammyj says:

    my brother is the only person in my life that knew me as a child.
    moving as we did so much… you think you will keep in touch… but you don’t. at least i didn’t.
    i have a few close friends now in real life… and on the internet because of the blogs… i have treasured friendships with people i’ll never meet in the flesh as ursula put it so well. and that is super fine with me. face to face is over rated!
    sending a snoopy hug to one of those friends right now… and hoping he has a wonderful weekend with tej.
    tammyj recently posted..hark!

    • Yes, he had a super time with Tej and over ate and had too many cups of ginger tea. Those visits will soon come to an end as the farm house is being sold, but we will meet elsewhere.

  6. Grannymar says:

    Friendship is a funny business and sometimes people who shout the loudest about being friends for life, are the first to jump ship when they are most needed.

    Borrowing from and abusing the words of The brook by Alfred Lord Tennyson:

    I chatter over stony ways,
    In little sharps and trebles,
    I bubble into eddying bays,
    I babble on the pebbles…..

    I chatter, chatter, as I flow
    To join the brimming river,
    For friends may come and friends may go,
    But I go on for ever.
    Grannymar recently posted..Thursday Special ~ Supersex

  7. wisewebwoman says:

    Yes, I agree Ramana, friendship is an odd business. Sometimes we wear out our friendships too or they wear out of us, who’s to know? I have close friends here where I live but none as close as my childhood friends who hold the younger me in their hearts as I do them. Blog friends are also a wonderful enhancement, I have met a few in the flesh and it has been delightful.
    XO
    WWW
    wisewebwoman recently posted..Philip Seymour Hoffman and the Monsters.

    • The closest friends that I have are those who went through difficult times when I went through those as well. Supporting each other through those turbulent days cemented the relationships. None of us have those kind of problems anymore but do have other problems and can still support each other and perhaps even intercede as the families are also very close.

  8. Max Coutinho says:

    Hello Rummy,

    I have few close friendships as well and most of them I met in school. So, I managed to nurture friendships over 20 years – which is impressive. I also have friends outside Europe (that I met while travelling) and I love them to death.
    As for my blogging friends: I cherish them as the precious beings they are (you included).

    I thank God for the old and new friendships.

    Cheers
    Max Coutinho recently posted..CAR’s New President Undertook a Daunting Task

  9. Cathy in NZ says:

    I don’t have any friends from my early days…I have a great friend that I initially met in the early 1980s but at the time we had quite separate lives except about once a month. Some years ago our friendship became stronger to a point now, we regular go places; talk on the phone; met to talk; email and so forth. She knows me in this “now time” and helps me verbal try and solve anything that needs solving…and together we bumble along.

    My family were never part of my life at one point, my ex-DH hated them, because they were forever belittling him about his origins (nothing wrong with his origins, I might add) and it became so difficult for me – that we broke up with them . Now I have been making friends with them – still doing that; although recently things have escalated into “we need you to help us with or we want to spend more time with you”

    Other friends are available from time to time, for reasons not needing indepth chat…

    Then there are my on-line friends, most whom I will never meet either…however some of them re-connected since facebook!
    Cathy in NZ recently posted..Whanganui: sleepy little town

    • You do bring in another element into the equation of family members who could be either friends or not. I have deliberately not included them in my post but they play a vital role in all our lives as well. As you probably know, I had a tumultuous relationship with my father and towards the end of his life I had to accommodate him and go through a hard time exactly because the non relationship was escalated!

      • Cathy in NZ says:

        I got into a conversation with my best friend, last evening about the problems with my elderly sister relating to a housing/personal problem – 1/2 of the kids want me to help sort it out! I’m don’t think I’m strong enough to stand up to the bully (first born) but my friend thinks I can…so now I have to work through when I can visit and access the situation; make some inroads into it all…

        I feel there is a solution right on the doorstep (so to speak) but have to find a way to get it out in the open and get it underway…

        If was better off financially it would be a peace of cake but persuading someone who way better off, use her monies – is going to be a tough call…
        Cathy in NZ recently posted..Whanganui: sleepy little town

  10. kylie says:

    i dont have many friends, not really sure why. having children ten years earlier than my friends of the time pretty much killed those relationships and on the rare occasion i make a new friend they seem to move away so i just bumble along quietly.

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