Seminary was a very intense environment. I didn't realize how much it was so at the time, because I was only a year out of college, and I was used to being around the same people all the time. I was used to seeing the same people while I ate and studied and worshipped, and so I took it for granted, and I guess I assumed that even when we didn't live across the courtyard from each other, we would still not only keep in touch, but continue to be close friends who were deeply involved with the ins and outs of each others lives.
The strangest things happen, though, when you scatter across the country and start living your own little lives. You look away for what seems like a moment to do what's necessary in your own time and place, and suddenly months or years have passed. People have gotten married before you even know they were dating anyone. They've had children while you're thinking that you just saw their wedding announcement last week. They've moved to a second call when you weren't sure they had found their first.
When I'm being realistic, I know that I've lived a whole lot of places and known many, many people, and that there is no possible way that I would be able to maintain the same level of friendship with all of them that I had in the time and place where it was strongest. That would absorb my entire life, and I'd have no time to live where I am now. Nonetheless, it's strange to think about all these people and the times when I could have told you the smallest minutiae of their lives, what they wore that day and what time they had their morning coffee. Now they do crazy things like give birth and it takes me a good month or more to even figure it out. And then there are new people, and new minutiae to learn, and that's good too.