Saturday, February 6, 2010

You've Got a Friend

It's our fourth night staying at Susie's home in London.

As we were on the bus coming here for the first time, my son asks "How far is it to your friend's house?"

"I don't know, I've never been there," I answer, suddenly thinking about the choice of words. I don't actually know Susie either, she isn't exactly my friend. I mean, I've seen her in class, and she's seen me, but is she my friend? I asked her to help me find a place to stay this week, to save on costs, as the Landmark Forum for Young People, plus the flights, was already quite a stretch financially. And she simply offered to have us in her home.

Still, I wondered, in real life, it's not like Facebook, you don't just "friend" someone. Or do you? Children do. When they meet someone they like in the playground, they say it's a new friend right then and there.

In fact, what do you call someone who, sight unseen, offers to put you and your two children up in their (immaculately clean and beautiful) home for a week? Yes, I think, "friend" will do. And "Yes," I think, "In real life, you actually can just 'friend' someone, just like that."

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