Qayyum came to me one night telling me that he missed his old school, Tadika Pintar Jaya. When I asked him the reason for him to feel that way, his reply took me aback. He told he did not have as many friends as he did then. I was sad at the thought of my Qayyum being friendless or even lacking in it, a trait he could possibly have inherited from me!
I continued with the conversation by asking him who he had his recesses with and also of his relationship with his peers in the classroom, therefore, when he told me his friends were Shafiq, Humaira, Faris, Nadzmi, Hadi, Harris, Amir from 1 Iman, Ammar from 1 Ridzwan, and the list goes on, he did not seem to have any problem at all. He definitely has many friends, but the sad look on his face signalled that there was still something boggling his mind. So, I decided to ask him just how many friends did he want and his reply was, "Everyone in my class".
Yup, it is natural for little boys like him to feel that way because as an adult, I have that same feeling too, all the time. If only I had more friends than just one, life would be all hearts and flowers for me. But, when I kept on thinking about the friends I have who are not near me, my face would light up into a glow and I would get a warm feeling blanketing all over me.
I recently got back in touch with one of my childhood friend Erni Suharto who was the only person to strike up a conversation with me the moment I set foot in SKSTB. I just got back from Canada after my father's posting ended and hardly knew a single word of Bahasa Melayu. People told Erni to stay away from me for many reasons but she never succumbed to their intentions. She remained my friend, my only friend, a very good and close friend, who never spoke a bad word about me until we reached high school when we went our separate ways. I stopped thinking about her when I was in Form 3, but I guess she never did that to me. She managed to find me through my brother's blog and now, we have come back to being friends again. That, is what I call a good friend.
A second good friend would be Doria. She came into my classroom during the first year after the matriculation course. We wondered how did she possibly make it in the class and what programme was she from. She was a lucky one but I was luckier because she decided to be friends with me. Even when I was up there in Edinburgh and she, in London, we never failed to send ourselves cards even if it was only for once a while. Above all that she has done for me, I am forever indebted to her for sticking by me in the good times and also the bad, for ignoring what others said about me, and only saw the goodness. And today, she is one of the very few who constantly keeps in touch with me.
Ayu and Faith, my two best friends..the two people who picks me up everytime I am down, who accepted me when everyone turned their backs on me for my misdeeds, who learned to love me. Ayu, forever willing to pick up her phone during the deepest hours of the night just to hear me babble on about my dissatisfaction towards the world and its inhibitants. Angelic, that is what they are...purely angelic.
So, here, when people have a dozen of friends to spend their birthdays with, or a dozen to talk about, I have only 4. But I am not ashamed because these four have the hearts of a hundred souls each. If you are reading this my dearest Qayyum, do you really need to have ten handfuls of friends? The number of friends you have really would not count if they are not good friends at all for what matters the most is how many out of the hundreds can you claim as your very good ones. And that is just what I told him that night. Don't find too many friends but what he should be looking for is too many good friends!
This is purely my ramblings for today on my experiences, nothing that has to do with yours.