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Old friends

(23 Posts)
grannyactivist Tue 09-Jul-13 00:12:45

In 1978, as a young soldier's (NCO'S) wife, I became friendly with a male officer. He married within a few months of our meeting and his wife then went on to become one of my closest friends. The class difference between us, with all that entailed, was very marked. In fact our relationship broke a taboo in the armed forces at that time - officers' and other ranks' wives were not permitted to mix socially. Although we're the same age my family background and hers couldn't be more different; her mother was the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of her county and mine was a waitress from a council estate. She went to Oxbridge and I left school at the age of fifteen......and yet.....somehow, in a situation and time when such things created real barriers we hit it off.
We are the sort of friends who don't speak for months, yet when we do we're able to pick up where we left off; we see each other rarely and yet each continues to hold the other's affection; my 'story' is interwoven with hers and we were each significant to the other at pivotal times in our lives. I count her as a friend whom I love. Next week I shall meet up with her for the first time in nine years when she comes to stay with me for a few days......the arrangement was made earlier this evening and I'm very excited. grin
That's all really, just wanted to share my pleasure and hope that it results in a lot more 'unlikely friendship' stories.

sunseeker Tue 09-Jul-13 08:34:11

Thats great. I have a friend who I have known since my school days, we don't see each other very often but we both know the other is there should the need arise. I find as I get older there are fewer people with whom I have shared memories

I am sure you and your friend will have a great time.

mollie Tue 09-Jul-13 08:40:43

That sort of friendship is very precious so I hope next week goes well and you both have a fabulous time.

glammanana Tue 09-Jul-13 08:51:44

ga you are very blessed with such a good friend and I'm sure the past 9yrs will melt away within seconds of meeting each other.
My best friend lives in Glasgow and even though I don't hear from her often she is never far from my thoughts and we always send each other little cards when ever we go anywhere but have not meet up for 5 yrs nearly.Enjoy your time together it will be wonderful.

Charleygirl Tue 09-Jul-13 09:12:32

My best friend lives in Falkirk and I live in London so we rarely see each other. We have been friends since we were 21years old. We do email daily which makes a difference.

Enjoy your time together.

whenim64 Tue 09-Jul-13 09:37:31

I have a close (best) friend who I have known since we were both two, and neighbours. When we were 13, our parents moved us in opposite directions and within weeks we lost contact. I often thought about her over the years, and heard at one point that she lived in Tasmania. 11 years ago, a few weeks after I started looking at the names of my primary school on Friends Reunited, her name appeared. I got in touch and we met up. We discovered we had been living a few miles apart, and once a week I had been working at an office whose garden backed on to the primary school where she had been teaching since returning to the UK.

We have been inseparable since and cherish our friendship. The forty years gap just disappeared as soon as we got together again. It's her birthday tomorrow so we'll spend a couple of happy hours together.

annodomini Tue 09-Jul-13 09:51:43

In my teens - in the 1950s - I had an American pen friend. Somehow or other we lost touch. I tried unsuccessfully to find her by means of a letter to the local paper of the town where she used to live. However, when she was looking through bundles of old papers with her DiL, she found a letter from me. Her DiL then found me on the web - my maiden name is so uncommon that there were unlikely to be two of us; and we have now been corresponding for several months by email. We have so much in common that it's quite uncanny. Both involved professionally in education, both enjoying our grandchildren, both doing voluntary work; both a bit arthritic. But whereas I am divorced, she was widowed after a very happy marriage. I have travelled more extensively and I wish I'd known about her when I made my one and only foray to the USA. Renewing our acquaintance after all this time has been most enjoyable and rewarding. And it's so much easier and quicker by email than it was sixty years ago.

FlicketyB Tue 09-Jul-13 10:36:20

I recently met up with a friend that I hadn't seen for 20 years ago, although we have exchanged occasional letters. It was as if we had never had the break, conversation was not all catching up, we just talked about all the things we always talked about.

FlicketyB Tue 09-Jul-13 10:38:04

I recently met up with a friend that I hadn't seen for 20 years, when she and her family moved to Aberdeen, we had worked together in London Since then we have exchanged occasional letters. When we met it was as if we had never had the break, conversation was not all catching up, we just talked about all the things we always talked about.

Ella46 Tue 09-Jul-13 10:38:35

What a nice thread, Ga enjoy your visit and when that's a lovely story.
My oldest friend lives in Barbados and we still keep in touch by email, but we have nothing in common and I find it easier to ramble on to her in an email, than face to face, which is a shame.

Gorki Tue 09-Jul-13 11:29:11

I met my best friend at ante-natal classes when I was expecting my first son. We are very different: I have my head in the clouds while she is practical, down to earth and house-proud which I certainly am not.Yet we would meet every fortnight for 35 years at each other's house for coffee and our tongues did not stop wagging. We supported each other through various difficult times but unfortunately she moved to Poole a few years ago to be nearer her grandchildren while mine are all in the local area. We now phone each other every month but it is not the same. sad

It is lovely to hear about everybody's friends on this thread.

ninathenana Tue 09-Jul-13 11:45:11

My best friend and I met doing our summer jobs when we were 15. She then left our North Kent town to do her SEN training (now a midwife) in Portsmouth. We both cried when she left.
We have kept in touch ever since. We ring or e-mail every couple of months
and can always pick up conversation as if we saw each other yesterday. She knows all my secrets and I hers. Fortunately my DH and hers get on well too.
DH can tell it's her on the phone by the way I answer grin

GA DD friendship with her DHs commanding officers wife was frowned on too. This was only 2011 as you know things change very slowly in the forces. Officer was a very down to earth guy. He and DD were on first name terms too.

Deedaa Tue 09-Jul-13 21:38:16

I have known my two best friends since we met in the second year at grammar school, 55 years ago. We have always kept in touch and try to meet up several times a year. I would also include my godmother, who was my late mother's closest friend. Since my mother died I have taken her place as a friend. sadly she is too frail to travel now, but we keep in touch by phone.

jeanie99 Sun 14-Jul-13 02:11:42

My oldest friend from our early 20s I know longer see.

We shared holidays together with our husbands all the parenting issues with our children when growing up, Christmas and New Years together the ups and downs of life and we were very close for many years.

When her husband died in his early 50s she moved house and changed her job. Went back to work for the employer where we had originally met, made new friends.

I've phoned and sent e-mails but she rarely replies the last I heard from her was a couple of years ago. She's retired now always going away with the new friends who are single or windowed.

It was very sad for me because I didn't understand why she would finish our friendship but I can only think as a couple we remind her of what she as lost.

I have a very good friend now who I met on holiday about 8 years ago and although we do not live near each other manage to get together about twice a year and we have some really long chats on the phone.

I think sometimes friendships do end naturally and you cannot do anything about it.

PRINTMISS Sun 14-Jul-13 07:55:18

Today we are having lunch with friends I consider new met them ten years ago no idea why we get on so well but we do. Tomorrow one of ou 'older' friends is visiting known him since the 1970's he is a lovely man who is bringing his son with him, his son has mild learning difficulties and with his dads help has done really well. He shares 24th December birthday with our son but a year younger. At the beginning of August we are meeting up with friends of 60 years, different as chalk and cheese, no idea why we clicked, but we have had lots of happy (and sad) times, and seem to spend a lot of time laughing together - in between talking that is . Friendship is a great gift, and it becomes more difficult to make friends as you get older,, so we make the most of those we have.

Hunt Sun 14-Jul-13 09:48:14

I have known my ''best friend'' since we met on our first day at infant school. We both spoke about our friendship at each others 80th birthday parties. We are more like members of each others family. I can tell her anything, what a lovely friend.

henetha Sun 14-Jul-13 11:03:08

My lifelong friend died 4 years ago and I still miss her. We supported each other through marriages, births, deaths and divorces. I have new friends where I now live, but it's not the same.
However, I count my blessings.

FlicketyB Sun 14-Jul-13 14:18:11

henetha flowers I had the similar experience 5 years ago when my dearest friend died. She was outspoken and mercurial and often lost as many friends as she made but our friendship lasted for 25 years through good times and bad. I still sometimes ache to have another of our long ribald and frequently libellous telephone conversations or better still attend one of her dinner parties where dessert rarely arrived before midnight because she was so busy talking she kept forgetting about the cooking. meanwhile the red wine and conversation flowed freely. Oh, do I need to tell you she was Irish?

granjura Sun 14-Jul-13 18:31:29

Very strange for me to be back where I was born and raised, after 39 years living abroad. Some of my earliest and best friends I kept in touch always, and being back here and so welcomed is wonderful. But what is strange is bumping into old school friends from the early years, that I've not met for 55+ years. The other day I was invited at the local school staff end of year lunch, and 2 of the three people celebrated on their retirement days were school friends- one I went to school with from age 4 to 18, and another I was at secondary school and 6th Form with. What is wonderful is that we all come from very different backgrounds and that our lives have taken us in very different directions - and yet the friendship remains. The wonder of having a well funded school system where no-one went to a different school than the local one- no private and different styles of education.

I've a few 'best' friends some here, some in far corners of the world and some back in the UK- and that is a wonderful feeling. I am very lucky indeed.

ps Thu 18-Jul-13 17:32:03

Ga A lovely story and one that should inspire all who consider there is a class divide. There is no such thing where true friendship is concerned. You are who you are and your friend is who she is. Your friendship is the bond that ties you. I wish you a very happy reunion and many years of friendship to come. A moral here to restore faith in human nature perhaps.
Good luck to you.

J52 Fri 19-Jul-13 10:55:05

Reading through the posts I empathise with jeanie99. I too have been suddenly dropped by a friend, who I saw through a difficult time. After about 10 years she wanted to ' heal the rift'. I realised this might have taken a lot of courage to suggest, so I invited her round, she came. All was amicable, but she did not suggest a return invite. That was 4 years ago no further contact, other than a nod or smile should we meet in the street!
Thankfully, A great friend of 40 years is arriving today for a visit after making a 300 mile journey. True friends do not play games with emotions. Here's to true friendship !! X

TwiceAsNice Fri 19-Jul-13 12:52:47

My best friend and I have been together since we were 9 years old. We are now60! We consider ourselves to be sisters rather than friends. She is an only child and I have a brother much younger than me and we are not close. We would both have loved to have had a real sister so we have 'adopted' each other. She knows everything about me and loves me just the same and I her. We have supported each other through horrendous things through the years and would drop anything if we were needed by the other. She brings such joy into my life and although I have other nice friends I can rely on she is just the best!

KatyK Fri 19-Jul-13 15:11:17

We have today been to the funeral of a chap who we got to know in our local pub. There are three of these chaps who always sit together, all in their 80s. They have been best friends since they were 14 years old and been through all sorts together, including the war. Sad to see the two remaining friends today. sad