Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Valuing Friendship

Exhausted from the activities of a three day business meeting out of town, I was met with traffic jam and bad weather on the way home. Torrential rain fell from dark ominous clouds looming above, slowing the long lines of vehicles ahead of me to a snail’s speed on the stretch of highway.

Nearing home, the loud prolonged eerie beep from the emergency system periodically blast, across the airwaves, warning of tornadic activity in the city where I live.

The announcer warned, “Take cover”.

The ordeal could not have been more untimely. I was to attend a friend’s birthday party that evening and had been looking forward to it.

The invitation came from the host, who planned it. Her voice was warm when she extended the invitation over the phone. She paused between words, searching for the best ones, and choosing those words carefully to explain her reason for wanting to host it.

In the end, she strung together a series of words that went something like this: She does things for others with no expectation of anything in return.


Still, something about the way she said it made it original- new- authentic. In life, few things are this way.

We engage in the same activities that are, for the most part, routine. We drive to work, turning from street to street, almost automatically. We interact with people we’re familiar with, and watch the same television channels for entertainment or news.

In the process, we easily overlook or take for granted the little familiar things that work together to enrich our lives. Often, it is only in their absence, we realize their value.

The host had taken notice of those little familiar things about the friend and recognized the value. She wanted to celebrate it- celebrate her.

I saw the host through new eyes, and I wanted to value her. Despite feeling exhausted, facing terrible weather, and the emergency warning, I went to the party. Others had made the decision, too, as I saw when I arrived.

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