Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Should Auld Acquaintance be Forgot....

Well, the votes are in and most people preferred ‘a stash of knitters’, but there was some feeling out there for a ravel of knitters.

I was surprised that we all missed the obvious one – a yarn of knitters. This would work 2 ways (considering that most of us are, um, somewhat loquacious). We could also be a skein of knitters – so that would work, too.

Currently we have an old friend of mine staying for a few days. The Director and I have been friends since I was in Kindergarten and he was in grade 2. He is good looking, articulate, straight, witty, funny and a great cook. He is single.

His is also, I should point out, highly sought after, but rebuffs advances. He likes his urban life just the way it is. When he needs rural recreation he visits us and gardens. He weeds and prunes, mows and digs up thistles. The children adore his visits and he copes very well with small people following him around. We drink red wine and eat nice food. My husband gets on really well with him. In fact, on both occasions I was in hospital having children the Director came to stay and he and the Accountant went out for dinner and drank rather a lot of red.

This got me thinking about long relationships. Up until my 20s I complained that most of my relationships only lasted around 6 months (with a couple of exceptions which went on much too long!). Then I realised that I was too focussed on boy/girl love/romance relationships and that I wasn’t terribly good at those.

What I was good at was friendships. I put work into friendships. I had a number of friendships that had lasted decades. Many of my friends had been that way since I was 4, 5 or 6. They definitely outlasted romances. They also overcame living in different states and countries, they outlasted marriages (on their side, not mine). They outlasted fashion disasters, the sixties, seventies and eighties,nineties and noughties, careers and studies.

These friendships were both male and female. They were substantial and dynamic. A gap of a few years made very little difference to the quality of the relationship.

On one occasion, I hadn’t seen an old friend for more than 10 years. We slipped back into the friendship with no change in tempo – it was as if one of us had popped out for some milk.

These are not static friendships. They contain no competition (although there is occasionally friendly rivalry). They have no problem with different interests or priorities, even different politics. The wax and wane sometimes, but have remained the lodestone of my life. I value these friendships.

So while I am still pretty hopeless at romance, the Accountant and I started off as friends, then became best friends and then the romance followed. We are still best friends, but there’s always room for more friends, old and new.

So after all that, I am pretty good at relationships. They just weren’t the ones I was thinking of!


Family Adventure said...

This is a lovely post.

It is wonderful that you have managed to keep friendships for that long. I wish I could say the same...but we moved so much while I was young, I am not sure I ever really had a chance to establish firm roots anywhere.

It is also wonderful to hear how well your husband and the Director get on.

Great post!

Heidi :)

Five Ferns Fibreholic said...

It was begining to sound like a single's ad for your friend...hahaha

Seriously now. I think that a friendship relationship is what you value the most and that is why you focus your energy there. From your own experiences it shows which relationship has longevity. I just hope the teen will understand this logic when she is 16.

kms said...

i am very happy to be part of a 'stash' of knitters, and given how precious our stashes are, it was kind of nice that you then talked about friendship. i have moved around so much that i cant say i have any long term friends like the ones you speak of, and i do regret it. food for thought...thanks!

Bells said...

I too have moved a lot over the years so have no real childhood friends or friends from youth. Some uni friends but even those are hard to maintain long term. If you've managed to do it, that's a testament to you.

2paw said...

How exciting to meet you and the kidlets!! I could have talked all day!! Hope you enjoyed your visit!!!!!!!! (Can't have enough !!!!s)

Amy Lane said...

That really is a wonderful post...may you and the Accountant have a continued long and wonderful friendship!!!