I don't know about you, but most of my closest girlfriends are far-flung. On the one hand, it's wonderful to have friends in almost every part of the country. Almost any time we travel--whether it be for a wedding, a family gathering, or a trip back to my hometown--there's an opportunity to plan visits with old friends. I love that!
But it's so hard too. One of my best college friends lives in San Francisco and we constantly complain to each other that once-a-year visits just aren't cutting it. We scheme and daydream about trips we could take together, and she's always plugging San Francisco and telling me I would absolutely love living there (my answer: maybe! for a few years!). We have long-term plans to take family vacations together with husbands and kids in tow and short-term plans to have a girls-only weekend in a fun, exotic place (if the budget ever allows). Basically, we're determined to stay close, to keep up to date on each other's lives, and to be friends to each other even though we live hundreds of miles apart.
So you find ways to keep in touch. This friend and I have a standing Friday phone date. Our schedules don't always align and sometimes we have to cut it short but we try to make it a priority. Another friend of mine is a brilliant text-chatter. No matter what prompted the original text, she always makes a point to also ask me how I'm doing and what I've been up to, or she'll tell me something about her own life. These mini catch-ups keep us in each other's day-to-day lives. I have several other friends who are great emailers. We'll exchange paragraphs-long emails about anything and everything and while we might do this only every few weeks, or every few months even, it's a lovely way to stay connected. It takes time and patience to carefully craft a long email and sometimes it's easier to open up and really share your heart in writing.
I believe that great friends aren't easily come by. This quote about friendship is so true--in friendship there's "no glue but mutual liking," and it is "therefore rare." I'm so grateful to have girlfriends who make an effort to protect our friendship and maintain our connection, despite not being able to see each other regularly in person. My goal is to have friends when I'm 80 that knew me when I was 20!
How do you keep up with friends who live far away? I'd love to know.