Hello, Goodbye, and the Mysterious Middle

There never seems to be enough time
To do the things you want to do once you find them.

(“Time in a Bottle,” Jim Croce)

The same with relationships. I am one of the lucky few to have discovered a few great friends at a young age, and today I said goodbye to one of them.

I expect there will be another hello at the end of this goodbye, but I have no idea what stands between the two. Goodbye is making that leg of the journey separately.

He has lived more than a thousand miles away for years now, and we have kept frequent correspondence. Technology today can bridge almost any distance. But the technologically-spanned distance is not the same as personal presence.

A text message is not the same as a verbal comment.

A phone call is not the same as a conversation.

A Skype chat is not the same as a living room chat, where two or more people breath the same air and listen to the acoustics of the same room.

The goodbye is over, the hello is coming, and between the two is the wanting for all the people I love in the world to surround me so that I never have to choose one over another.

The best of all is for the hellos to outnumber the goodbyes, with good friends to walk with us along every stage of the journey.

That makes it easier to forget what’s missing in-between.

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