I met up with some ex-colleagues on Friday night. I met them when I started my first job in Leeds for a company who shall remain nameless and I remember the time fondly. Not for the work, because that sucked. My timing was out as when I joined them there wasn't really anything relevant to my skill-set for me to do (they were a sort of consultancy / body shop / pimping operation) and I was young and cocky so I was a tad pissed off to be sitting around reading rather than working with shiny new technology.
However all was not lost. You see we had table football.
As soon as the clock struck 12 we'd surround the table and the banter would begin. At times I could barely stand up for laughing such was the quick wit of some of the guys. Even when not playing it was hilarious to watch two protagonists trying to win the game, and if not the game then putting off the other one. Oh, and of course fighting like crazy to avoid the shame of a 10-0 hammering.
There was the power player, the skillful one, the show-boater, the people's champion (who's always the moral victor), the shoot-on-site one and of course the lucky one (I hate lucky people!). They all know who they are! I was never much good at it but it was a lot of fun and better than writing another tedious white-paper nobody was ever going to read. It certainly served to get rid of some of the frustration of the job!
So we met up for the first time in quite a while as I said (we've all kept in touch but just don't together often enough) and it was a real laugh. Even though 4 years have passed we were right back there discussing the finer points of goading an opponent to lose at table football and such like!
There are some people you meet and for a time you're really close, have a great time and are best friends. But when that time passes and you only meet up now and then, it's never quite the same again as the shared experiences are in the past. Fortunately with these guys it's like no time has elapsed at all and we picked up from where we left off. I guess that's my definition of true friendship. You don't need to work together or spend a lot of time together, but when you do things are just back the way they were.
And you know, I'm sure I dished out a 10-0 hammering one time to Nige… I just bet he's blanked the trauma of that out of his mind – but I never will! 😉