BURYING the hatchet can be difficult and to do it properly the timing has to be right.
Even Buddha and the Dalai Lama must have had the occasional set-to in their lives and after time thought, well maybe it’s time to move on, let it go.
Sometimes the difficulties can be caused by simple arguments, other times by more serious events — crimes, affairs, money etc.
We had gone through a lot together before our fall-out. Well, it wasn’t so much of a fallout as a series of life-changing events that sent us to opposite ends of the country and turned our existences upside down. Some of these were unavoidable, others a combination of coincidences, happenstance and alterations in emotional make-up.
Some of this was accepted by both parties, bits by one or the other, parts by none and much of it exacerbated by reaction, justified, understandable and not.
Other people got involved, points were scored and lost, time and lives moved on and the hurt dissipated.
You get to thinking about your past, wondering about people, what happened to them, are they still alive?
Unless you avoid social media, live as a hermit or have successfully staged a disappearance, if someone wants to find you, these days you will be found.
So I went on Facebook, typed in his name and up he came. I did a bit of stalking, knew where he’d been on holiday over the years, some of what had happened to him, and wondered...
I went home, said what I had done and thought “it’s time, it’s time...”
I wasn’t going to turn up at his house 300 miles away, nor was I about to phone him out of the blue, so I took the modern day easy option of sending him a direct message on Facebook... and waited.
I wasn’t confident he would come back, maybe because he had moved on, wouldn’t want to revisit the distant past or, if he did, didn’t even recall what I thought of as the good times with any great fondness.
A couple of weeks went by and I got a message, nervously opened it and read that he had often thought about me and would be happy to make contact.
A few days went by and, as I parked up in Morrisons, my phone rang. It was him.
How would the conversation go? Would it be edgy? Nervy? Would we approach any difficult subjects or just talk nonsense like we always did?
Within seconds the answer was evident. After a brief resumé of the past 15 years we talked music, TV, comedy, dodgy celebrities, serial killers, people we used to hang out with and some he still does.
It was like we were just catching up on the day’s events, not the happenings of the past 5,000.
We still haven’t met up, but we will soon.
It should never be too late to bury the hatchet and I’m glad in this case it wasn’t, but the longer you let a dispute rumble...
A rare case (on my part) of a life lesson learned.