Twelve to a Table

I’ve never had such a big group of close friends before I came to my current school. Being a girl who liked intimacy with her good friends, I’ve only ever had a group of four or five girls close to my heart. But having moved schools halfway through high school, I found myself surrounded by a group of eleven wonderful girls. That time of moving schools was a time of great change for me. From living across the street to the school, I suddenly had to take a bus, a train and then walk to school. From a coeducational school, I struggled in the first few weeks with the idea of going to a girl school. So I was glad of the many good friends that I’ve found.

It’s amazing to have eleven other shoulders to depend on when I was down, and to get to know each and every one of these girls. We were inseparable, just like the Three Musketeers (although with four times the people). But it was also easy to get lost inside such a big group. And it was so easy to lose track of a friend with all the chatter around us.

Throughout year ten all twelve of us used to sit together, squashed like sardines onto four little benches surrounding a table. Most of us were from the same class and shared pretty much the whole day with each other, so we were very tight. Those times sitting shoulder to shoulder under the sun were some of my favourites. We talked of light-hearted things and laughed so much together. Although now I kind of wished that we didn’t talk just of happy things. I wish that we’d find the courage to delve into our miseries and let the others heal us.

Then it was summer break, and we came back a year older. Now in year eleven, a mere step from the top of high school, we were upgraded to a new area and a lot of changes. No longer scheduled in all the same classes, we rarely see each other. Our interests and choice of subjects separated us in class, and our extracurricular activities took us from each other at recess and lunch. Our table of twelve was reduced to about seven, with people flitting in and out. And it became so much easier to lose track of each other.

The End

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