The topic of friendship

Topos filos. You know the word topic, which means "commonplace" - "of a place". Ultimately, we pick topics that are either comprehensible to all, or that we will make comprehensible for our audience.
I have been thinking a lot about places. Why is it one feels a greater need to revisit one place, instead of another? I think my friend put it really nicely: "I don't know London as well as I do New York City, so I have less of a reason to go back." So, largely, places are pleasing due to their familiarity. Yet, we know that through education, we are meant to "broaden our horizons," or, in this case, broaden our topics.
But I will throw a token of friendship into this topic fountain, and let us see the results.
Even if we know a place well, if our friends have gone from the place, it becomes a ghost town. If we go to a place we have never visited before, where we have friends, we feel at home.
But who are our friends? According to reviews I've read of Dunbar's How Many Friends Does a Person Need?, the answer is a few good ones, who are subject to change. He claims we always have about 10-15 closer acquaintances, the kind of people one could borrow money from at an airport (funny example, no?).
I might agree with this, especially if applying the proverb, a friend in need is a friend indeed. Friends become touchstones: the quartz used to test the quality of gold or silver.
If we become better people as we grow, the quality of our friends changes: not necessarily becoming "better" friends, but by becoming those who can improve those areas of ourselves that need improving.
If you disagree so far, how about this idea: that our friends are those who are willing to make sacrifices for us - and vice versa.
I once met a girl, in one of those bizarre degrees of separation that I can say happen most frequently in metropolises, who told me a story of her youth. She had a friend who wanted to end his life, so she volunteered by saying that if this was so important to him, she would end her own life with him. Without sharing all the details of this story, they both lived, though her parents severely scolded for her action (yet she saved his life, by agreeing to partake of his emotions - which were not her own).
I think that friendship is one of the most intense schools of life, one of the most complex topics.
Earlier today, I was reading about font maker Natalia Vasilyeva over at MyFonts. The interview covered topics that included place, or topos. While she was not asked about friendship, something that she said seemed to me applicable to the topic of true friendship (so I am taking it out of context):
"In my opinion we have an obligation to understand the internal essence of any object we’re dealing with. I don’t understand people (and there are plenty of them) who are satisfied with monotonous activity within one fixed scenario."
Friendship will bring us even so far as to territories that we had never anticipated setting foot on (yes, literally). We will come to know realities we had never dreamed of (in a positive and negative sense), and we will be faced with new essences that challenge us, but ultimately enrich us.
Ultimately, we broaden our horizons through friendship, not places.

Elements: buttons and embroidery: minitoko
 sequins, shipping tag, envelope, dotted circles, doily, honeycomb paper: pugly pixel.

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