My friend Meriel came to visit me this weekend. It was great.
I'm finding it hard to deal with being apart from my family and best friends. Before I came here, I thought that finding new friends would make it easier to accept the absence of my old friends. It's not. It just makes me realise why my old friends are my friends. It makes me realise how familiar and easy human interaction can be, how I took things for granted. You see, one of my fixed ideas is that to understand other people we need to know their background, their history. Without this knowledge, other people are almost always strange. The problem is that this knowledge can only be aquired over time, so even if you're surrounded by a number of interesting, lovely people, it'll take ages until you actually know them. Sometimes this freaks me out and I feel alone in a sea of strangers. Sometimes I ignore my sentimental streak and simply enjoy myself.
I wonder if living in the 21st century means that I'll be forever separated from people I love. I still hate Skype, it only increases the distance. I don't like e-mails that much either, the only exception to this being my brother whose emails are so incredibly idiosyncratic that they're completely in character. Facebook messages are the worst, tiny anonymous blocks of text. Really I think my favourite mode of communication is thinking of other people intently, looking at their pictures, making the occasional expensive phonecall (why this feels different from Skype I have no idea...) and receiving things in the mail. Postcards. Letters. Parcels. Even if it's something completely random. My best friend used to send me concert tickets. I can deal with that, random things are the best because they make me feel as if I was a part of the other person's life instead of a friend who you have to make time for. It's pretending that the other person is still around instead of hundreds of kilometres away.