it has been a long time since my first day at school. The thing I remember most was Mum telling me I would soon make friends. I had no clue what she meant, but there was a lovely new girl called Gillian who I bonded with in the play house and who was my friend for the first three decades of my life.
Later, I got the hang of the making new friends thing. I started work and soon found people I got along with, our shared love of dancing and drinking alcohol stood us in good stead and some of those people are still friends today.
Motherhood brought a whole new set of new friends, coming together in the shared horror of having to care for babies, we talked of cracked nipples and sleep deprivation and somehow, with wine, we got through the early years.
Then came a move to a completely new town, somewhere I know nobody at all. With four children to keep me busy at first there was no time for friendship. Gradually they came, the life long tribe who are my go to crowd. We have spent twenty years together these friends and me, and I can count on everyone of them. I was settled here and ready to grow old alongside these people.
Now, my world turned upside down I find myself once more in a town where I know nobody. This time there are no children, no school gate or workplace. I admit I felt a little lost. A couple of phone calls later and I have a volunteering job, lots of people to meet and slowly it is starting to get better.
The friendship thing is different this time, I am older, a bit wiser and not sure of my place in this new town. I am determined to make the most of this, if this is where we live I shall live and not exist, and for me to do that I need to find my people.
Today I was invited out for lunch, a lot of volunteers coming together to eat and chat, it was charming. We laughed so much, our shared humour and stories made it great fun. There is talk of us going for a walk, maybe to the pub, it is getting better this finding friends thing.
Later I have to pick up some shopping from the supermarket and I am wandering around, thinking about the new people I have met and feeling lucky to be there. I suddenly notice there is a plant in my trolley. I haven’t put it there. Puzzled I take it out and then notice other items in there. I check this is my trolley, yes my shopping bags are on the handle. I look around to see who is mistakenly putting their choices in with mine. No one around. I am just about to unload when I hear laughing. Yes, one of my new pals is messing with my mind. She has been popping items in my trolley and hiding, and getting very frustrated when I didn’t notice. It made me laugh a lot.
So, here I am, on a hill in the wind, but down in the town there are people who I think I am going to enjoy spending time with, people who one day may become friends. Things are getting better for sure.