My friend is very learned but also very down-to-earth, especially around his kids. And his wife is a very strong, caring woman.
I wish I would find excuses to see them more often than when we have kids ourselves.
I wish I did not think about any excuses for seeing any fine friends more often.
it's not just that my friend helps with a trivial thing, like moving a table, although it costs him on a busy schedule. He would have done that anyway, on most days.
But he helps *and* knows.
Knows me. Knows children.
Knows changes. Knows time.
And I know that he knows and cares.
That moment today with him then ... would not have been possible 25 years ago ... because some moments need to mature.
To grow old in the right way. For the right purpose.
Like something you drink that warms you for a long time after.
That's worth it. Worth our age.
There are exceptions, but the rule is probably that it is dangerous to confuse the two - colleagues and friends. So invest some time in your friendships, not just your career. It will serve you well when your career tanks. Which it will on occasion. But friendship - if it is true - will not.
That's what a friend's letter feels like, no matter how it is written. It has more than one dimension in it, and each and every one of them feels like a special surprise party that your friend had arranged just for you.
Certain friendships and certain stories, have a very powerful effect on us in childhood and we keep coming back to them, hoping to find the heart from long ago in them. Even when our minds tell us it’s long gone.It is a testament to the power of the heart which is both a blessing and a curse.
It is a blessing because the power of heartful experiences by and large is what makes life feel full and rich.
It is a curse because the initial experience can be so powerful that it keeps us locked in.
It keeps us looking for the faint glow of the original experience. It keeps us looking for new embers which might use to fan the old flame ...
... long after we are supposed to let it go and kindle a new fire in another place.
But on average, perhaps, it is a blessing that remains. For that is where it started.