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Filed under: General,Life — Thomas @ 11:49 am

2004-7-26
11:49 am

So – had a nice couple of days with my friends from Gent staying over. I had a great time, I hope they did too. Having them over has made me realize a few things though.

In life there typically aren’t many moments where you don’t have friends and have to make an effort to make some. The last time I probably had to do so was in kindergarten. After kindergarten, you always seem to carry over some old friends on your way to making new ones. So people see that you already have friends, so you’re friend material, and everything works out fine.

So you start to take friendship in general for granted. On the other hand, moving to a completely different country changes all that, and for the first time I’ve had to think again about how the process of making friends works. I make it sound really boring and calculating now, and it’s not like I sit around all day thinking about it :) But, subconsciously you do tend to mull over it. So having had my friends over I realize I don’t have friends like that here, and it’s unlikely I will any time soon, since these old friends have only become really good friends over a long period of time.

A second thing I’ve realized is how people can behave in certain situations. A long time ago I had a girlfriend that went to live in Venezuela for a year. I went to visit her for two weeks after around seven months. I had looked forward to it immensely, but the first ten days were a complete let-down. She was incredibly distant, unemotional, and cold. And while I could speculate on why, and we discussed it in the final (great) four days, I never fully understood what had happened.

But now I do. Saturday, the last day they were here, I was in a pissy mood because I realized that the next day they’d go back to their lives in Gent, while I’d stay here. And even though I like my life here a lot, the city is great, and so is my job – I still felt homesick. Also, while we had a lot of fun, apart from politics we didn’t really talk about anything serious, and I realized afterwards that I kept my distance on an emotional level. It makes sense when I think about it, and it’s probably the same thing that happened to me in Venezuela.

I’m sure I’m overanalyzing right now. So bottom line is, Kristien and I need to spend more time with people here :)

Anyway, I had a great time, so thanks to all of them for coming over. We did some sight-seeing, formed a five human pyramid in the water (after about twentyfive tries), went for great tapas, had a perfect barbecue (Jeroen’s steak preparation rivals Julien’s), and just had lots of laughs. Hope some of them come over sometime soon again.
It also means we have to invest a bit of time in making good friends.

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