Archive for May 1st, 2009

Saying goodbye to Julie

Saying goodbye to Julie

I’ve been writing a lot lately about friends … new, old, near, distant, physical, virtual … the value of all and the fact that I welcome them into my life with gratitude.

One advantage of life on a tiny island in the middle of the Indian Ocean is the diversity of friends and the fact that with so few people here, I usually end up meeting a lot of those with common interests that come to Seychelles and stay a while.

People come from all over to work or play, and as the shots I posted of more recent additions on the “people I’m fond of” list shows … eleven countries represented in twelve photos … my friends are from all over the world.

That is, indeed, a lovely aspect of island life. Conversations are fascinating, parties are a hoot and the bottom line always ends up under what what we share, not how we differ.

What is not, however, quite so lovely is the fact that most of these lovely friends also go.

Holidays are short and work contracts usually last only a year or two. Getting close to people comes with the caveat: This will not last for long.

My first few years here had me ducking-and-covering to a great extent, careful to keep myself a bit aloof, forgoing close bonding with those I knew would move along long before I would be ready to say goodbye.

That, however, is not a natural posture for me … my tendency is to give my heart, care much, share all, and I’ve learned to enjoy while I can.

The Internet has helped immensely, of course. I can now see people off at the airport knowing that we’ll be chatting on facebook in a few hours. This is not the same as having them in arms’ reach, but it does make a difference.

There are many, many people I miss daily and desperately, but I would not give up the time we did have together for anything, no matter how big a hole is left when they go.

The up-side is that I have friends all over the world, and although I don’t travel as much as I would like to these days, the biggest issue when thinking about going somewhere is deciding who I’m going to visit.

I spent some of yesterday with a family I’ll be waving adios to tomorrow night … Jakob, Lisa and Julie.

Jakob is from Denmark, Lisa is Swedish and Julie is 10-months-old and a heart-stealer. They going to Stockholm, and although I most certainly hope to share space with them again someday, there is no guarantee that will ever happen.

Although we didn’t spend a lot of their year here together, their departure will leave a blank space in Seychelles and I will miss them.

Thankfully, Lisa keeps a blog … today’s post is full of photos of me and Julie (Thank you, Lisa!) … so I will be able to watch a little darling grow, if from a great distance, and follow their lives as well as Bablefish allows me to understand Swedish.

Friends come and friends go, and I’m thankful.

As that great sage Anon once said,

“You meet people who forget you. You forget people you meet. But sometimes you meet those people you can’t forget. Those are your ‘friends.’”

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