Â Dear all,Â Â
It has been more than a year since the day I published my very first article on Gather. I must admit that when Leah first invited me here, I was somewhat reluctant to participate - because I doubted my capabilities, because English wasn't my first language, because I had so much other duties and responsibilities to take care for... etc., etc. But then I did find courage â€“ or audacity â€“ to post my â€œRussian Liberalâ€Â piece â€“ and never regretted about it, being so deeply, thoroughly moved by your warm welcome and your responses. And now, in anticipation of this special day, I want to honor and congratulate you all â€“ those whom I knew since the very first days and those whom I came to know just recently, but who have managed to quickly win my heart, nevertheless. ;-) All these months, you were a source of great support and inspiration for me. Each of you is an unique, interesting personality, with your own talents, with your own inner world. I love you all dearly and owe to you much, much more than I could express in words, whether in English or Russianâ€¦. I wish I could meet you â€“ each one of you â€“ someday. Thank you for being there. Thank you for promoting the true â€œGatherâ€ values â€“ peace, mutual respect and genuine feeling of fellowship. Youâ€™re all in my prayers and in my heart â€“ foreverâ€¦Â Â
Hugs and blessings, as always â€“Â
P.s. Below are some great aphorisms on friendship I have found when browsing through Internet. It is my little gift for you all:Â Â
Often we have no time for our friends
but all the time in the world for our enemies.
On the road between the homes of friends, grass does not grow.
A friend is rare book but only one copy is made
Friends are lights in winter;
the older the friend, the brighter the light.
~ Roger Roseblatt ~
Some people come into our lives and quickly go.
Some stay a while and leave footprints on our hearts.
And we are never, ever the same.
~ Unknown ~
A friend is a gift you give yourself.
~ Robert Louis Stevenson ~
Shared joy is double joy. Shared sorrow is half sorrow.
~ Swedish Proverb ~
A true, true friend is like a rainbow after a storm.
If you have one true friend, you have more than your share.
~ Thomas Fuller ~
Friendship is God's special way of loving us through someone else.
Hold a true friend with both of your hands.
~ Nigerian Proverb ~
A friend is someone who knows the song in your heart
and can sing it back to you when you have forgotten the words.
~ Unknown ~
Friends are angels, who lift us to our feet when our wings
have trouble remembering how to fly.
A true friend is one who
Knows you as you really are,
Understands where you've been,
Accepts who you've becomes,
And still gently invites you to grow.
A good friend sharpens your character,
Draws your soul into the light,
And challenges your heart to love in the greatest of ways.