Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Thursday, August 02, 2007

By Shuprova Tasneem

Friendship Day is just around the corner; and it's a great day for learning about the number of friends you have and how much they appreciate you through their numerous wishes and few gifts. Although many of us are getting busy with buying the usual friendship bands, mushy cards, matching trinkets and what-not (unless of course we consider ourselves too old for this kind of stuff), the novelty is lost, especially if you've been giving your friends these same items year in and year out. Besides, though the random Friendship Day presents sold in gift shops can be quite cute, they are not usually the kind that have the ability to warm your friend's heart and burn it to a crisp.

So what can you give to, or what can you do for your closest friend that will be a really moving gesture of friendship? Well, that depends on their individual needs, which you being the good friend that you are will be well aware of.

For example, I recently heard of a really amazing thing that a group of students did for one of their closest friend. The aforementioned friend had a family tragedy, and was facing financial hardship, and his friends pooled their resources to help him pay his tuition fees for university. Now that's what I call sticking to the “all for one and one for all” code, and supporting your friend in this way is much better than splurging on some ridiculously expensive gift that s/he doesn't need. Even if your friends are not in such dire straits as mentioned here, you can always offer them a helping hand by paying for a course their parents don't want to pay for, encouraging them to enter into internships that will help them in the future and so on.

“A friend in need is a friend indeed” this Latin proverb has been repeated so many times that it's bound to get on your nerves. Nevertheless its truth cannot be denied and is proven in another recent incident, where one friend saved the life of another by donating blood after she was grievously injured. Though this might be a bit of an unusual gift, if you have a rare blood type you can definitely prove to be a great pal by donating it. If your friend does not need it, I'm sure s/ he might know someone who does. If that is not the case, well you can just badly wound your closest buddy first and then give her your blood as a proof of your eternal love. (kidding!)

Even if your near and dear ones are not in life and death situations, there is generally a pretty good chance of getting mass hysteria, dengue or some other type of disease. In such cases, you would be acting as a very dutiful pal if you made frequent visits with chicken soup and flowers and cheered up their lonely bedsides. If your friend is helplessly bound in a cast or something, even better, for then you get to poke them as much as you want!

Finally, one very important thing you can do for a friend is taking care of their belongings if they are called away for any kind of emergency. Trust me, this occurs quite frequently to most people, and usually it's very hard to find someone who will instantly agree to defend the fort and look after everything. Ranging from watering the plants and cleaning the house to taking care of pets and babies (where understanding the vast difference between the two would be an important issue), all these tasks can be of major help and set your friend's mind at ease.

You don't necessarily have to donate a kidney or an eye, but there are a number of out-of-the way things you can do for your nearest ones to prove your friendship. Actions can mean a lot and at the end of the day, all you have to do is be there for your friends when they require you the most. Remember, “The only unsinkable ship is friendship” and before you all strangle me for such a corny quote, let me take my leave by wishing you all a Happy Friendship Day!



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