As a bashful young boy in Elementary school I had thought that my best friend would be another child like me though I started to think differently when I spent more and more weekends and during the school year and several weeks during the summer with my Grandpa. Frankly speaking, at first I did not like the idea of having to be with an old person that was quite natural because I was only seven year old who needed a friend. Probably at that age I did not fully understand what is it a friend but now looking back in the past and reflecting on my friendship with my Grandpa I realize that he was more than just a friend for me, he was my teacher, mentor, confident and best friend.
Speaking about my Grandpa, I would like to underline that despite the subjectivity of my personal opinion I think he was a very affable and considerate person. Naturally, he was not an ideal person and probably he had some shortcomings but as for me, at so young age, he became the best person who was extremely important for me. I should say that he taught me a lot and what is more important he could give me a piece of advice or support somehow when necessary, or he could explain we what I did not fully understand. I remember in details an episode from my childhood when he really managed to reconcile me when probably the first drama had happened in my life. It was the day my dog died. I felt awfully and my Grandpa suggested going to fishing. Now I understand that he my terrible state of mind to be dispelled. Even now I remember well his words of consolation. I thought I would have never recovered from the death of my dog but my Grandpa managed to dissuade me in it soon. But it does not mean that he simply calmed me down. I felt that he sympathized me but I did not expect he could help me. When we were fishing he told me that I should not regret so much about the death of my dog because it was a natural process. I’m afraid I did not understand all that he told me that day but later I realized what he intended to say.
He compared our life to the river and he told that our life would never be stopped as the flow of the river. He explained that all of us were born and al of us would die some day but others would continue to live. What impressed me the most was his belief that even if some one dies he continues to live for those who knew him well and who would remember him. I listened to my Grandpa not understanding all he wanted to tell me but still I felt better. Now when I recall this episode from my life I think that at the moment I was probably more influenced by the atmosphere, by my Grandpa calm, steady voice rather by the sense of his words but later it helped me greatly and influenced my view such on things as life and death. After that I understood that my Grandpa was a very acute observer who could understand feeling of other people and was able to console them.
Another episode from our friendship also influenced me very much. It was one of our conversations we used to and I was eight or nine year old boy at that time. I told him about a boy from our class who had a stutter. Practically everybody in our class laughed at him but I told my Grandpa about him he told that it was very cruel from or part though I cannot say that he prejudged me or some of my classmates. He simply told me what he thought about it and for me he set a good example to follow. He said that we could not criticize or laugh at other people because of their physical disadvantages and at the same time those who laughed at such people seemed to him either cruel or simply stupid. After that conversation I had completely changed my attitude to the boy and other people like him. So I think that my Grandpa’s attitude to people is very humanistic and very deductive, particularly for young people.
Although my grandpa passed away quite a long time ago I still feel his guiding spirit and his advices are still very helpful. Time has only reinforced love and patience he taught me to show others. I believe I am a lucky person since not so many people can have such good friends as my Grandpa used to be. On the other hand, some people are fortunate to truly have a best friend and may enjoy a longer lasting relationship but very few people could ever have gained the lessons of a lifetime learned at such a young age. The pain and sorrow of not understanding his death has been replaced by thankfulness of having been able to have such a special friendship that has stood the test of time.
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