7th February 2017: Day 19 - Should Auld Acquaintance Be Forgot?
Should auld acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind? Familiar words by Robbie Burns that we sing to ring in the new year, yet I’m not sure I actually sit and think about old friends in the approach to and at the new year. No it isn’t something that automatically springs to mind.
This morning as I was getting dressed a woman I worked with, an at-work friend, came very strongly to my mind. I knew she still worked there but I wondered how she was doing. I went out today and lo and behold there she was with her now grown up daughter. How often has that happened to you, that you think about someone and within minutes or hours, there they are. It wasn’t so amazing that I saw her where I saw her which was near where she works (and near where I live) but I’ve lived in this area for about a year now and today is the day I bump into her. This has happened before, not often, I would say a couple of times in my life. I’ve had the same with telephone calls, I think about a person and they call me.
So what is it that creates the contact? Does my thinking about you bring you into my sphere or do I think about you because I’ve intuited that you are coming into my life in some way? Not a question I need to answer, it just makes me think, hmm.
A couple of years ago I made a decision that when I get that voice that tells me to call a person, where possible, I do it immediately. The first year saw me a bit slack but now 9.9 times out of 10 I do act on it. The reason I wouldn’t is if the thought comes to me at an anti-social hour, depending on the person I may send them a text message or wait until the next day (if I remember).
The other funny thing about my encounter with my old work friend is that I went out to buy a card to send to a friend I haven’t seen for about twenty-three years. This was one of the ideas I got from friends when I was starting EDF5D. She was a good friend, I met her when we were in college in Guildford and after college I would go and spend weekends at the cottage she lived in (on a farm I think). She got married, had a baby, then moved out of London which is where our lives diverged but we kept in touch through Christmas cards and the very odd phone call and then we didn’t. There was no reason, no bust up or misunderstanding. What happened is what happened with a few people at the time. In 2009 I went to Brazil for 6 months. Everyone knew because it was my Christmas news before I left and I think some people thought I didn’t come back. In fact I know some did because when we encountered each other years later they said
‘I thought you were still in Brazil.’
That misconception was allowed because I stopped sending Christmas cards, and I stopped sending Christmas cards because of… the Internet and text messages and WhatsApp etc. In addition to that I lost my address book so I couldn’t send cards if I wanted to and the internet meant that, for the most part, I didn’t need to.
So this friend got lost in the midst of all that because I don’t think she uses social media and we don’t have each other’s mobile numbers. A mutual friend found me on Facebook and gave me her address – today I’m horrified to realise it was nearly 2 years ago – and when I decided to do this she was the person that came to mind. When she gets the card will she say
‘I was just thinking about you?’ or has she been thinking about me and is that why I chose to send her the card. As the king in The King and I would say,
‘It’s a puzzlement.’