Thankful for the good times
The Way I See It
by DON WEST
Over the recent Labor Day weekend, there was a gathering of friends. This group of friends has a history, a history that goes back to when our children were young, our energy was high, and few days or nights passed that didn’t find us together for one reason or another.
The recent gathering was a casual quiet enjoyment of each other’s company, a leisurely boat ride around Lake Arthur, a social drink and some snacks and an early curfew. As I enjoyed the afternoon, I couldn’t help but recall all that we have shared through the years.
As time and destiny demands, we are not together nearly as much as we once were. There were a few recalled events about boating, swimming, and fishing at Bundicks Lake, skiing trips to Colorado, fishing, skiing, swimming, boat rides, barbecues and other assorted activities along the Mermentau River and in Lake Arthur. There was much more togetherness in our younger days as someone always seemed to be grilling some steaks or hamburgers, boiling crawfish, having a pool party or just getting together for a “friendly” card game or board game.
There were trips to high school, college and professional football games, hunting trips, shopping, dining out, and activities that supported the children as they grew. It is good to recall all the times that have passed, though the memories are not all good. We supported each other through good and bad times. Illnesses, accidents, deaths and all the other ups and downs that life brings are always shared by good friends, celebrating the good and lending support during the stressful and sad times.
We helped one another with remodeling and rebuilding homes, shops, outdoor kitchens and whatever other projects came along. We were so close that we each took a turn falling off ladders, so one would not have a leg up on the others. The first who fell destroyed nearly all the bones in his foot, eventually had to have it fused and was laid up for months during recuperation. The second one fell on a concrete driveway sustaining a mild concussion along with cracked ribs and was fortunate to not have broken anything. The third fall caused cracked ribs, bruising, and loss of time on the project, but we all survived to fight another day. We are just much more cautious around ladders.
Yes, we are friends and all friends will have differences along the way. We are not the exception, and six adults and a slew of children will find that opinions clash, but love lasts and fences are mended.
Though the landscape has changed some through the years, our hearts remain firm and our friendships endure.
As life goes on, it is important to remember that there will still be ups and downs – that the world will get a little out of kilter at times. As we become more aware of the limited number of breaths that we have remaining, we will always remember that friends are the bridges who help us across the troubled waters in our lives.
I am thankful that we have had these many years to cherish and to now recall with pleasant memories all those special events that made life fun, and I’m grateful that these special friends were there to laugh, to cry, to congratulate and to console. One could not ask for more in life.
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