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In memory of absent friends

December 3, 2008
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Better writers than me have described the bitter-sweetness of Christmas, the joy, the love, and the melancholy ache that tugs at you when absent friends come to mind. For me, this time of year always reminds me of Claire – a lovely young woman I went to university with. She was killed in a car accident coming back from watching The Nightmare Before Christmas – a film I had wanted to see, but still can’t bring myself to watch now. The irony is that I would never have got to know Claire if my best friend hadn’t committed suicide ten months earlier.

I could write pages about Helen and about the effect her death had on me – but we are in the business of turning bad things into better things are we not?

So, the simple and obvious first. Don’t just write “must catch up in the New Year” in those Christmas cards. Get your diary out and make a date now.

Secondly, yes, money is tighter than usual, but don’t let that stop you making a small donation to charity. There are so many making a difference at this time of year. The Samaritans, Crisis and Shelter will all make good use of your cash and you really could be giving someone a better Christmas.

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