One Woman's Week: A Blast From The Past

11-05-07

BY KAREN FENESSEY 

I HAD a great weekend but I wish it could have lasted longer – it's a pain having to go back to work and be surrounded by needy little children all day.

Actually the weekend did have one downside – on Saturday night I was in a pub in town, with my boyfriend Donny, and I ran into a girl called Roseanne Jepson who I went to primary school with years ago. Roseanne and I used to be really close friends – we lived opposite each other right up to the age of eight and wherever she went, I went too. But to be very honest, this was a long time ago before I really knew the difference between right and wrong.

It wasn't until we started mixing with other people at school that I started to realise perhaps she wasn't the kind of person someone like me should be friends with. That might sound quite snobby, but I'm just stating the socioeconomic facts.

Her house was pretty scabby and if I'm honest, she looked a bit dirty and unkempt most of the time. I don't think her parents could afford new clothes very often. But of course I'm not the kind of person who would dump a friend just because they're poor.

I have plenty of poor friends today who can't afford to look their best. Although I might not accept their dinner invitations (I can't stand poor quality food), it doesn't mean I don't make the effort to be nice to them. That's one of the qualities I have which makes me an excellent teacher.

Anyway, I stuck with Roseanne as much as I could but she started to annoy me quite a lot after a while and although I gritted my teeth, it became difficult to resist the temptation not to sever the friendship. I did let her know that she was pretty embarrassing (in a nice way) but she still didn't clean up her act. So I decided not to invite her to my birthday barbeque just to teach her a lesson.

Thankfully she didn't bother trying to gate crash – she obviously heard the noise of people having fun in my garden from across the street, but I think she knew as much as me that it would be too embarrassing for me on my birthday to have to tell her to leave so thankfully she stayed away.

After that she pretty much got the message – I had to send Victoria Medwell to tell her to leave me alone a couple of times but apart from that she stayed away. I didn't really see her much after that and she became pretty much a loner for the rest of school. At least this confirms I wasn't the only one who thought she was a bad friend.

Well, after all these years you can imagine how surprised I was to meet her again in the pub last night. I was just waiting for Donny to get me a drink when I saw her coming towards me – and she was SMILING! Can you believe it? After her performance at school you'd think she'd know enough to keep away! She still looked rough and she was ugly as ever – I was glad I was looking extra good that night. It was so embarrassing. I had to pretend I hadn't seen her and she got right up close to my table and tried to sit down and talk to me! I just ignored her for ages and eventually she went away. I'm still stunned at her nerve. Perhaps one day she'll realise that changes need to be made before she can be my friend again.

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