Stories of the open road

Tales of a Vagabond...

“In life, it is not the number of friends you have that matters but it is the number of people you are a friend to that really matters” – A ‘Think a Minute’ quote
Are you a good friend? It is a ‘difficult to answer’ question but speaking theoretically you are a good friend at least most of the times. Have you ever heard statements from your friends like “Thank you for braving the storms with me and making my Sundays so much brighter”?
If your friends admire you as a good friend who stands alongside them when they need you, you can be proud about you just as they are about you. Or have you ever heard from a friend and declared that ‘everybody should take their responsibilities and you have your own problems and you have no time to worry about the losers who cannot stand on their own feet’, it’s time for you to wake up my friend.
There are some people who are respected as a trust worthy person, someone with whom anybody can share sorrows as well as joy. What is the secret behind such a sacred element?
First of all, in many cases your friends never ask you for super human advice. They just need your attention or let’s say they need a friend to listen to them. They express their feelings, their depressions in front of you and after that they are relieved. Every good friend should learn the art of listening.
And you should be a person who can “keep your mouth shut”. Your friends express their feelings, even the hidden feelings in front of you and this means they simply trust you. They believe in you. And they might reveal the darker sides, you might feel it is awful and a further friendship with them will be impossible. But think again, don’t you have dark clouds inside you? Until they believe you and expose their darker side, you were never uncomfortable with them.
You should always determine “the best things for your friend”. He or she might say their love affair will never work. If you can see there are only misunderstandings and they can still make a perfect couple, stop convincing your friend to ‘break up’ to temporarily set her mind. On the other hand, if your friend is in a cumbrous love affair, never advice to ‘make it anyway’. If you feel the best thing for your friend is a ‘separation’ tell it anyway whether they are ready to accept it or not. That’s what friends should do. Think about your friend’s own good and future.
A person should always be able to shoulder their own responsibilities. No offence. But every human has a breaking point which nobody can predict. Today it happened to your friend and tomorrow it will be your turn. Stop pretending like a remorseless ‘perfect’ creature. Give a hand to your friend to patch up their fortitude and courage.
Always keep this in mind, ’What we do for ourselves dies with us, what we do for others lives on’. Be a munificent friend who lives in your friends’ hearts, forever…
- Pathum Punchihewa
Published on Youth Mirror - Daily Mirror ( 11th February 2010)


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