I have built walls
A fortress deep and might
That none may penetrate.......
(Iam a Rock by Simon & Garfunkle)
22 years is certainly a long time to keep away from friends who live within a 5 km radius and with whom I have spent the best part of my working life. Deftly slipping away from parties and other occasions that may probably get me into a interaction with my old friends was something I had avoided with much elan. Why should I do this? The answer may elude me. To me honest I had nothing much to contribute in such occasions. My tongue was tied and my countenance did not present a comfortable look even to myself.
So when i found myself contributing substantially to a noisy conversation at the Sterling Club with 5 of my old colleagues, it felt a lot different. There was a fun and camaraderie. We parted reluctantly planning to meet often. It was a lot different. The veil has been torn asunder, so it seems.