Within two days, I have nearly been involved in what could have been a fatal bike accident twice.
First day, I was on my way to work, at a busy junction, the traffic light showed red, the bike man decided this is the perfect opportunity to ignore traffic signs and run over some pedestrians who were crossing at the time. We got lucky. I was holding the back rest of the bike at the time so the application of sharp brakes didn’t throw me over. The pedestrians just barely managed to escape and the others held us hostage for a few minutes exchanging curses and abuses with the bike man.
The next day, I was also on my way to work… same junction. I’m beginning to think there’s something about bike riders and that junction. The bike rider ran a traffic light, was about to turn left, saw the traffic warden a bit too late and in a bid to avoid paying fines, swerved the bike straight ahead and in the process, another bike hit us from the back. I got lucky again. This time around I wasn’t holding the back rest of the bike so my hands were safe from being broken. It was just a small bump of the other bike’s front to my leg.
I would like to say that these two isolated incidents helped me reflect on life, but nah, that is a lie. I just thought it will be a great intro to this write-up.
Some great friendships I have had in this twenty-first century have more or less ended. Well, I can’t say that for all of them… Some of them we are still struggling to keep up.
NAJ – 2010 till 2012
Ours was like a hit and run friendship. I don’t remember exactly how it started but I remember exactly how it ended. Now that I think about if, you strung me on all through the duration of our friendship. I was emotionally detached from everyone, you pretended to be emotionally aware of my feelings and as soon as I fell for you, you got away.
I don’t regret our times together. You were the first human I told I love you. I remember our calls, we always did the “always and forever thing”. We were naughty. You always seemed to be in some kind of trouble and I was always there to hand out good advice. We confided in each other although now I know some of the things you told me in confidence are lies. I started noticing some cracks when you went away to university before me. Naive little me thought we would remain the same, always and forever right. I went away to university too and we still kept up the pretence, until the day I heard you say I was just an old piece of rag that has refused to been thrown away; not exactly in those words but it has same meaning. I forgive you though. I forgave you a long time ago. I do not know if the strength you gave me to deal with what was going on at home was false, but either way, thank you.
NIL – 2010 till struggling 2016
Now how did we become friends.
Call me twisted dear readers but we met after he did something to me that will be classed as sexual harassment in 2018. Now, back then I didn’t know what it was but all I did know was that I felt like dog poop afterwards that I went ahead and told him off. Well, one thing led to another and he became my confidant. We had long hours of calls, countless letters, several used note pads in class and what not.
How did it end?
There was never really a clean cut end. We just drifted. Our chats became monotonous, he was always trying to chat me up with the same conversational starters the boys of his age used I guess, I was having none of it. With time it became a yearly happy birthday friendship. Dear NIL, I definitely thought we were fated when I realised your birthday was 23 hours after mine. You were my first crush. Scratch that, I think I loved you back then with my small teenage brain. I remember crying myself to sleep when you started dating someone else. That was how I knew the words of the song “If you’re not the One” by Daniel Bedingfield. I think I wondered a lot why you didn’t pick me. Now I realise years later after we talked about it that I was the cause. You know back then, if you liked someone you had to pretend you didn’t like them so you wouldn’t appear pathetic. Teenage crap I guess. You would be pleased to know that I have changed since then, now if I like you, I will tell you straight up.
JUN- 2012 to struggling 2018
In the summer of 2012, when I met you, you looked dashing. Now I had known about you obviously prior to this meeting and vice versa but the last we saw each other was when I was well far from puberty. Having
learnt from past experiences not to hide feelings, I took your number and we began to talk. You were an introverted thing. I wanted to know you more. The chats became long calls, the long voice calls became long video calls. We were in different continents at the time but somehow we made it work.
You were a joy to behold. I started liking you the day I told you a story and I waited for you to judge me like others…you didn’t.
You might not know this but I met you during a bad phase of my life, you gave me strength and helped eased the loneliness and lack of self-confidence I felt. For the last three years when life hit you square in the face, you stopped listening to me. You started hiding and I, the award winner for the most persistent human gave up on you.
I am sorry. I gave up on you because I couldn’t handle your flaws. I forgot that every human is flawed. I understand better now, your flaws weren’t your fault. Our recent conversations has rekindled the spark and are almost like old times. It is as if nothing happened.
Our friendship hasn’t ended. I hope it doesn’t. But life has taken us to different paths. Perhaps we will see.
LPO- 2013 to struggling 2018
Hello there LPO, I also cannot remember the exact moment we began interaction. But just like your friend JUN, we had known about each other from the napkin years but had never spoken as at 2013 when we were well into adulthood.
Truthfully, I disliked a lot of things about you. You always thought you were right. Your mindset never quite fit in with mine. I think that is why we drifted. I couldn’t handle your thinking. It is true we had a lot of similarities, but our glaring differences made the similarity look like chicken shit. You are quite the conversationalist and I could keep up but I knew it wasn’t going to last long. On some issues that mattered most to me you stood against it vis-a-vis.
So why am I thanking you? Because you made my evenings fun. Coming back home to speak was and always will be a pleasure.
Dr.EC- 2012 to struggling 2018
Our meeting was per chance. The very first social media friend I have ever made. I remember that we often joked a lot about how difficult I was at the beginning. I think you were the very first brother in my friendzone.
You were helpful, kind, understanding amongst other things.
I remember worrying a lot about your safety when you were still in medical school. Till date, I really don’t know what made you slide into the DM and remain there. I do not know what the future holds for us. I wonder what will happen when we actually meet physically. This online chat has gone on too long. I hope you will not be disappointed.
OEK – 2000 to 2016
Ours was a very long friendship. Perhaps the longest I have ever had without a break in communication but my thoughts on you on this blog is going to be the shortest. We were sisters, partners-in-crime at one point even but you broke that trust. I forgive you, I still love you and wish you nothing but happiness, but we cannot be the same again. I cannot deal with betrayal when I have gotten to that level of bonding with anyone.
Back to the present day, I put up a picture of me in a headwrap. I wonder if I’ll lose another friend over my apparent “conversion”.
To those friends that we’ve parted ways, In the words of the Jackson 5;
I sit around
With my head hangin’ down
And I wonder
Who’s lovin’ you”