As the world celebrates Friendship Day on August 4, raise a toast not only with your current group of friends but dive into the past and relive the sepia toned memories, writes Jaideep Deo Bhanj

Zain Saleh, a college student carefully packs away a photograph of himself and his college friends taken on a road trip. The photograph is of a group of friends huddled up and smiling. College is over and the group has got scattered across the country. It is time to move on and they have given each other a copy of this photograph as a keepsake of the good times. A magical moment captured forever. We all have similar photographs either hung on a wall in our homes or stowed away in some trunk. A magical moment caught forever. But how many of the friendships captured in that frame actually stand the test of time?

People go their separate ways and before you know it everybody gets busy with their lives and makes new friends. The once a week phone call soon becomes a once in a month call, and before you know it your best friend only calls when there is a problem.

Gaurav Gupta who passed out from BITS, Pilani a few years back says technology has helped him keep in touch with his friends. “I pick up the phone and call my friends often. Even if I am speaking to someone after a long time it feels as though no time has passed.” Some people however do not keep in touch and make excuses; however when someone takes the initiative and plans a reunion, everyone joins in. All it needs is a single phone call to make the time and the distance disappear.

Nina Chengappa who studied in a boarding school says, “Looking through photo albums always takes me back to the fun time I had with my friends. Old photos always put a smile on my face because every photo is a cherished memory and gets me nostalgic. Moving away always reminds me of the last scene from the show Friends when they leave their empty apartment. Do you ever wonder if they stayed in touch afterwards?”

Seldom do group photos stand the test of time as there are many things other than distance that can come in the way of the group staying together. As Bob Chris, a student puts it “Don’t have too much fun with anyone because when they leave all the fun you had will haunt you till you break.”

Sadly not all friendships last. Sahiba Sachdeva says it is a terrible situation when friends fight and it tears the group into fragments. “You have to try and be objective and not take sides. But it’s very difficult to deal with such a situation and you end up taking sides.” Her friend Indraveer agrees and says it is inevitable as best friends often end up getting into relationships and it splits the group when things turn sour.

Natasha Raheja, a teacher has some advises those who have fallen out with friends over insignificant issues that got blown out of proportion: Communicate and bury the differences. “Time is a great healer and if you find yourself in such a situation pick up the phone and talk. You will be surprised to find how the biggest of differences can be bridged.”

Celebration

The first Sunday in August is celebrated as Friendship Day across the world.

Vizag is also gearing up to celebrate this day with parties planned and cafes and restaurants gearing up to see lots of friends having a good time. As you celebrate with your current group of friends, don’t forget to glance at that old photograph and give each and every one in the frame a call and relive the past memories. Thank an old roommate or a colleague for helping you through a tough time or relive a memory with your closest friend who lives halfway across the world.

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