Remember the acronym? I was first introduced to it in 1973 when I got to attend SMSP [the very first boarding school in Pahang] by the 'English Medium' students when they exchanged their fancy autograph books and me and other 'Malay Medium' girls went gaga over all the FRANCE, PARIS, *I have a pen, my pen is blue, I have a friend, my friend is you*, *forget me not* and other standard autograph acronyms and phrases. Those were the days ...
The pleasure of the company of old schoolmates at the recent gathering still lingers. We have had such a gathering before, initiated by S now an expatriate in Brunei. That was my second participation. I missed the first one.
I happened to sms J whom I have not met since we left school three decades ago. He made it to the gathering and after a couple of reintroductions, he was again the ‘ketua kampong moyok’ he was back then in the classroom.
The bunch of us had such a great time helping each other to finish the food on the plates [just like when we were thirty years younger] amidst laughter that broke out often and lively chatters. I marveled at the coziness and the ease we didn’t have when we were at school. I wished I could capture that moment and never leave. The camaraderie and joy of being together were beyond description. After three decades the only issue was trying to catch up with details about what we have been doing with our lives.
I had this article in my saved folder on “True Friends” written by Pn Sri T D Ampikaipakan, 23 Nov 2007, Winning Ways, Star Online.
Friendships should last and not fade with the passing of time.
“Friends in your life are like pillars on your porch. Sometimes they hold you up, and sometimes they lean on you. Sometimes it’s just enough to know that they are standing by.” – Anonymous
"… So what kind of a friend are you? What kind of friends do you have? Are you one who will only make friends with people of your kind, or are you one who look for kindred spirit? Do you have great friends at the workplace or are the colleagues you think as friends quite happy to stick a dagger in your back?
Parents are often terrified when their children come back from school and talk about their “best friend”. They want to know who they are, who their parents are and where they come from. Parenting concerns often centre around “friendships” which the children make as they go though school and university.
A person is shaped by the environment around him. It follows that the friends he has will ultimately mould you.
We also know that our children would rather talk to a friend about things that worry them or of concern to them. Experts tell us that children need to connect with other children and form friendships, which in turn teach them a lot of social skills. They learn to share, understand each other’s interests and accept that everyone is different despite shared interests.
What makes a good friend? Let’s make a list:
· Anyone who is not judgmental but will tell you the truth about you and your actions.
· Someone who does not compete with you unfairly.
· Anyone who is thrilled when things go brilliantly for you.
· A person who cheers you up when things look down.
· Someone who defends you bravely when people are vicious.
· Someone who is there to boost your morale and motivate you when you have failed.
· Anyone who will laugh with you, cry with you, and act silly, when the situation requires it.
· Someone who befriends you irrespective of who you are or where you come from.
Good and lasting friendships are always a blessing. Some friendships formed at school last a lifetime. Some people have friends but as they grow older, they change, their interests change and they move on and make other friends. That’s okay, too.
People say that when you grow older, like-minded people come into your life and friends who envied your success will move away. It is also a fact that you will eventually outgrow some of your friends.
Then there are those who have lost friendships because of a jealous spouse/ relative/ sibling/ peer. The death of a good friendship is often the hardest to deal with. It is sad and tragic. …
There is a pattern to every friendship: we hope that it will endure over time and distance, mistakes and misunderstandings … "
To my friends, my eternal gratitude for making my days sunny. Thank you.