The word ‘friend’ covers a multitude of people as they pass through our lives.
To me ‘friend’ is one of many words in our language that is used too casually, simply because there isn’t another suitable to describe someone who is not a stranger, more than an acquaintance, but not quite family.
The Oxford Dictionary defines ‘friend’ thus:
a person with whom one has a bond of mutual affection, typically one exclusive of sexual or family relations.
We had a phone call yesterday to tell us that a friend had died.
An elderly lady, she has been a friend for about 7 years.
Despite us moving away, we kept in touch by email or telephone, never forgetting each others birthdays and sending cards and small gifts at Christmas.
The last time we spoke, she hadn’t been well, her twin brother was in hospital having had a stroke, and her sister had also been poorly.
This kind-hearted woman was always there for us should we need an unbiased opinion, advice or support, and when we lived locally, we would sometimes visit when out walking the dog in her area.
When her husband was alive, we took a selection of photographs one Christmas and put them together in a collage which she put up on her wall.
Forever independent despite multiple sclerosis, she would walk down to the pub for her Sunday lunch, go out with friends for fish and chips on a Friday, and enjoyed the occasional outing with those in her community. She did her shopping on-line, and had a variety of handymen come and help out around the house or in the garden.
It was her daughter who contacted us as she was going through her Mum’s address book and letting people know. Such a daunting and sad task, especially speaking with strangers.
We met her briefly at her father’s funeral a few years ago.
To be honest, we were not surprised as we had tried to contact her, but our emails and letters were unanswered, and the phone continued to ring despite varying the times of our calls.
The funeral details are going to be sent to us, but it’s unlikely we will attend as it’s too long a journey for one day.
Our thoughts are with the family as we remember a dear friend who made us laugh and cry, never let life get her down, and was a blessing to all who knew her.
RIP. We’ll miss you, and will light a candle for you in The Abbey.