View Full Version : Where did they go?

12-12-2001, 10:19 AM
I ran into an old friend this morning at the gas station. This was someone I hadn't seen any probably 7 years and before that over 5 years. We exchange pleasentries and went our separete ways. I left my card with my number, but I really don't expect to hear from him again.

This little encounter got me thinking again about old times and old friends. But as time moves on so do we. At the time me and my friends were in-sepratable. We played football, rode motorcycles, went climbing, talked about girls, basicly we did it all together.

I still see them in my minds eye as we were back than. We were young with no worries and I still had hair (though my kid don't believe I ever did). Those years shaped my who and what I am now.

Somehow and someway the years have slipped away and so have we. Ocassionaly I'll bump into one of my friends and we will say Hi but than go our separte ways. I know that we have our own lives now, but still there is something special and magical about those friendships that have been lost, never to be found again. I guess I miss those days and it makes me kinda of sad. Ow, well life goes on and I guess I need to learn to grow and change with it.


Greg H
12-12-2001, 10:29 AM
It is never lost.
Take confort in thinking that they may see it the same way.

I'm sitting here packing christmas gifts to send off to my daughters....all grown up, far away.....

[This message has been edited by Greg H. (edited 12-12-2001).]

12-12-2001, 11:12 AM
Is that what Tom Wolf ment when he said you can never go home again? Or some such.
After High School I enlisted in the Air Force. After boot camp and tech school I got together with the H.S. buddies who only a year before were nearly inseperable. There wasn't much to talk about. They were still cruisin' & boozin'. Still looking for jobs at the stamping plant or just drifting. It was sad. I've no idea what's become of them in the last 40 years http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/frown.gif
Many memories are perhaps best left as memories. You really can't go home again. It's no longer home and you're no longer the you that was.

[This message has been edited by TomRobb (edited 12-12-2001).]

12-12-2001, 11:48 AM
I had a friend in my teens who shared my love for sailing. We'd sail around the coast of Maine whenever we could. I lost touch with him after college, but reconnected last summer (after 25 years). We went sailing together for three days, and catching up with how our lives have developed was an enriching experience. We stay in touch by phone and e-mail now. I recommend it to anyone who can do it.

Wild Dingo
12-12-2001, 12:11 PM
Ive just come back from home all my mates that I grew up with are still there doing the station thing... some have moved on but only a few... a couple have gone to the other side and thats sad but... Ive got memories of times as a youngun at boarding school in the city with some mates getting into all things teenage girls surfing bikes cars whatever and some of them well all of them actually Ive had no contact with since the early 70s and other mates from after leaving school who I shared some space and time with and then moved on... and for me thats fine... they got on with life and so did I good memories to look back on... but well life moves on... enjoy the memories.

Actually thinking about this I do remember about 20 years ago calling into a roadhouse in the Northern Territory with the new missus in tow... we fueled up and then went in to pay and grab some tucker when this bombshell and I mean a godess in hotpants... anyway this sheila on the other side of the counter stares at me "oh my god its not... it is!!.... Shane??" I was struck dumb who was this goddess??... slap reality check... pretty shiney new starry eyed missus at elbow... "err yeah and who are you?" bombshell goes all gushy doesnt even bat an eyelash at said pretty shiney new starry eyed missus at elbow "oh of course you remember the B&S ball at school in 71... Im Suzie Remember? You gave me undying love out the back of the gym remember? see I still have the ring you gave me!!"... me glancing fertively at said shiney new starry eyed missus who is now glaring dangerously from self to the bombshell with the huge gaping chasm for a mouth that was swallowing her foot leg and torso and dragging mine down with it... "errrrr yep... how much do I owe you?" I croaked as I promptly threw a $50 on the counter for what was worth about $10... grabbed said shiney new not so starry eyed missus and fair flew out to the car and off down the track amid the newly aquired and perfected "look" and the strange tapping from the floor under her foot and the quiet "Weeelll mister explain yourself!!!!!"

Took me years to explain that one away and mate I cant for the flamin life of me remember the girl... true!...

Some memories are best left as memories.

Take it easy

Howard Gmelch
12-12-2001, 12:31 PM
Grew up in New York. Have lived in Texas for a while now. People back in NY can't even undestand me anymore.

12-12-2001, 01:20 PM
neat thing about this new fangled technology is that all accents sound the same.......I guess I talk too slow for folks on the left coast...everyone thinks I'm finished talking and starts talking over me....must have something to do with the "Okie" speech.

Scott Rosen
12-12-2001, 01:57 PM
"We few, we happy few, we Band of Brothers; For he to-day that sheds his blood with me shall be my brother."

I wish I could go back and be brothers again with my childhood friends. My best childhood friend and I became Indian blood brothers by cutting our fingers and rubbing them together, thereby joining us together in blood. I think we saw it on an episode of Daniel Boone, or Davy Crocket. Back in 1965 or thereabouts, we made a promise to each other to meet under this certain tree on New Year's Eve, 2000. When that day came, I knew he wasn't going to be there, so I stayed home. But I was tempted to go, just to see what magical things might happen at that moment, the joining of past and present. Hardly a week goes by that I don't think of him, especially now because he's USMC reserve.

Some would say the bonds between childhood friends are the strongest bonds two people can share. David and Jonathan. Tom and Huck.

I've tried to contact some childhood friends, and it seems that the present day reality never lives up to the memories. Yet some of them are like family. I may not see them much, but I still care for their welfare despite the years that pass and the differences that arise.

Speaking of friends, we've got a pretty good thing going here, for a bunch of over the hill wooden boat fogies, anyway.

12-12-2001, 02:43 PM
Yes, we do go our separate ways but then, somehow get back together. My college roommate of 40 years ago and I sort of drifted apart, but have recently become good friends again over (you guessed it) wooden boatbuilding.

It seems to have become an annual event. We've built three electric powered sharpies and a Glen-L TNT for use with a brother's classic 1956 Mercury 20HP outboard. The word goes out "...we're building ..." and he and I and my brothers converge in Michigan, build a boat, launch in two weeks and then anticipate next year.

And that's how I spend my vacation.

12-12-2001, 04:46 PM
I, too, miss some of the good times of old. Once in a while, I do run into some people. It usually is a somewhat forced, silly conversation at the grocery store, or something like that.

I'm just not so sure we would even have anything in common.

I sometimes go to bars where we used to hang out ... more times than not, it's the same group of guys hitting on the same old chicks ... Gosh, wonder how many times they've all swapped! http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/wink.gif

The friends I have now are my friends ... mainly friends I've made over the past 10 years ... my wife, Mike K., Eric (my brother-in-law), my sister. My parents are in my top five list, as well-- fortunately.

My friends of today share my interests and I, theirs-- Boating, water, beach. Eric has a boat, parents have a boat, sister has a boat, we have a boat ... Mike just tags along, but that's okay, too.

My closest high-school friends are very scattered and things will never be as they once were.


[This message has been edited by brad9798 (edited 12-12-2001).]

Memphis Mike
12-12-2001, 09:38 PM
Well, my friends, I have a little story to tell also. I didn't believe any of the people
that I grew up with cared about what was going on with me at all. Ran into a girl that was a REALLY GOOD FRIEND to me before the H.S days. Found her in CLASSMATES. We sort of comforted one another when we were
growin up. We both had a lot of s going on in the house so to speak. We have been talkin
via email for the past week! It has been great! Made a real differance in my attitude
to know that at least one old friend still cares.

jack grebe
12-13-2001, 07:25 AM
I have a friend that I used to pal around with in school back in the 70's that moved to Tex. after grad. Since then we have talked a couple of times on the phone but that was it(halfdozen time s maybe).In aug.he made a trip to D.C. with his family and I met him there with mine. It was like old times. a Great time was had by all

12-14-2001, 01:37 AM
Speaking of recalling old friends: During some of my high school years I lived aboard a schooner at Berkeley (Calif.) Yacht Harbor. Also working aboard was a buddy named Howard.
We scraped, painted and kept her in Bristol fashion and sailed her for the owner.
Then in early 1944 I went into the Navy, and Howard joined the Army. He did not return to Berkeley, and I figured we had separated forever.
Shift to a hotel dining room in Guayaquil, Ecuador, in late 1957. What I was doing in South America is not relevant to the story. I had been invited to a farewell shindig for some oil drillers who were being transferred to Arabia. As we sat down to dinner I looked across the table, and there was Howard. Wow! He was managing a shrimp packing operation for an Ecuadorean firm and running two shrimp-boats. I went to work for him, spending a couple of months designing a marine railway, installing an ice plant, doing a few other engineering-type jobs, and running one of his boats, then continued on my way. The last time I heard from him was after I moved to Wisconsin in 1966. He phoned from New Orleans and offered me a job as skipper of a converted minesweeper he had acquired to carry bananas from Ecuador. By that time I was well situated as a college professor and married plus kids, so despite a strong temptation I declined. I don't suppose I'll bump into him again. But who knows?

[This message has been edited by Bayboat (edited 12-14-2001).]

12-14-2001, 10:24 AM
Originally posted by Scott Rosen:
Speaking of friends, we've got a pretty good thing going here, for a bunch of over the hill wooden boat fogies, anyway.

I guess we do have a good thing going here. My wife told me the other day that you guys probably know me better than she does. It is amazing how this is such a tight knit group being as we don't meet that much face to face. I have met a few folks here, Margo & Dave Geer and Wayne Williams, and so far everyone has been great.

Around this time of year I start thinking about the friends that we don't see anymore and the ones that are lost to us. I find myself thinking back to those days and it seems magical and perfect. I would hate to spoil the memories.

Over the last few years I've started entering the phase of my life where I'm slowly becoming the patriarch of the family. The older generation is slowly going off to their reward, and more and more I'm the one that the others come to. This has saddend me and made me wish for the days of my youth. But, I will hold my head up high and give the younger generation my all.

BTW, I'm not that old, but circumstances beyond my control has brought this on.

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who misses the friends of their youth. At first I felt silly posting this topic, but now I'm glad I did. Thanks for your support.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

Wild Dingo
12-14-2001, 12:08 PM
I know someone said it awhile back that this is sorta like a bar where this group of old codgers and a few codgerettes come in of an evening and sit around the fire with a few drinks and share the comeraderie... well it wasnt said exactly like that but thats how I took it to be...

Were like a brotherhood,,, nay a family,,, nay a boathood,,, nay a sailhood,,, nay a blending of minds,,, nay we are but a meeting of friends with perplexing personalities who gather to yarn and laugh and cry and share the ways of life for the time we can within the realm we share... if we meet in person we meet if not we have already met through the medium available to us.

And so.... another youngun joins the old farts club!!! http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/biggrin.gif http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/biggrin.gif http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/biggrin.gif

Well all I can say is your in good company mate!! http://media5.hypernet.com/~dick/ubb/cool.gif

Take it easy

ken mcclure
12-14-2001, 12:24 PM
Once in awhile I go and look up an old friend or acquaintance and call them on the phone to tell them I've lost their phone number, and "could they give it to me again?"

It almost always works. They give me the number, and then start laughing. We usually get together for coffee or a couple of beers and catch up.

I've found that it's almost impossible because of changes in life circumstances to restart old friendships where they left off. It's good, though, to maintain that touch with the past.

12-15-2001, 07:51 PM
This has reminded me of an old poem... a favorite of mine...

The Fire of Driftwood

We sat within the farm-house old,
Whose windows, looking o'er the bay,
Gave to the sea-breeze damp and cold
An easy entrance, night and day.

Not far away we saw the port,
The strange, old-fashioned, silent town,
The lighthouse, the dismantled fort,
The wooden houses, quaint and brown.

We sat and talked until the night,
Descending, filled the little room;
Our faces faded from the sight,
Our voices only broke the gloom.

We spake of many a vanished scene,
Of what we once had thought and said,
Of what had been, and might have been,
And who was changed, and who was dead;

And all that fills the hearts of friends,
When first they feel, with secret pain,
Their lives thenceforth have separate ends,
And never can be one again;

The first slight swerving of the heart,
That words are powerless to express,
And leave it still unsaid in part,
Or say it in too great excess.

The very tones in which we spake
Had something strange, I could but mark;
The leaves of memory seemed to make
A mournful rustling in the dark.

Oft died the words upon our lips,
As suddenly, from out the fire
Built of the wreck of stranded ships,
The flames would leap and then expire.

And, as their splendor flashed and failed,
We thought of wrecks upon the main,
Of ships dismasted, that were hailed
And sent no answer back again.

The windows, rattling in their frames,
The ocean, roaring up the beach,
The gusty blast, the bickering flames,
All mingled vaguely in our speech;

Until they made themselves a part
Of fancies floating through the brain,
The long-lost ventures of the heart,
That send no answers back again.

O flames that glowed! O hearts that yearned!
They were indeed too much akin,
The drift-wood fire without that burned,
The thoughts that burned and glowed within.

-Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, 1846

11-22-2002, 07:46 AM
I'm going to pull this deep out of the archives for Ish.