I am getting quite spooked by the amount of times that I write a post & then find myself musing on the same subject in the next post too. It may only be a coincidence, but it’s becoming a regular one. This time, friendship is central again.
Two nights with different friends:
Friday: Went up to Manchester for dinner at a friend’s house (Saw Paul Daniels and Debbie McGee en route, but that’s a different story!). The group originally met as postgrads at Manchester Uni, with a few partners joining over the years. It was a raucous evening: lots of ribald anecdotes; lots of reminiscing; improvised karaoke to Grease 2 clips on YouTube. Time just seemed to melt away, with the realisation that it was after midnight coming as a shock to us all – especially as I had to make the 100-mile trip home…
Saturday: Popped round to see one of my oldest friends while she was babysitting two of her nephews. Amongst her first words to me was the line ‘There’s no point leaving the TV on as we’ll only talk over it all’. I knew then we were in for an absolute putting the world to rights session. Two chairs; two cups of tea; two hours of solid talking. There was nothing that I couldn’t say & I knew she would always ‘get’ where I was coming from. People like this are rare & I know I’m very lucky to have her in my life.
So, two very different nights – yet in many ways, they’re incredibly similar. Neither was expensive or fancy or elaborate (although my friend’s cooking was amazing!); neither is comparable to the lifestyles & events plastered across the pages of celebrity magazines; neither contained any major revelation or shocking news or even any real drama. Some might sniff at them, dismissing them as boring. For me, these nights are what life is all about. They are the moments that make life worth living; that make life life. Connection. That’s it. That can’t be pre-planned or bought or faked or bottled & packaged. They are moments to be treasured, like the pearl in the quotation I posted a week or so ago:
‘The pearl is hid in the field,
and the field in the world and the world is in your hearts,
and there you must dig deep to find it,
and when you have digged deep and found it,
you must sell all to purchase and redeem this field.’ (George Fox).
Tonight I feel like I have the pearl gripped tight in the palm of my hand, and I’m not letting go.