Friday, January 13, 2006

The Search

What follows are notes I made yesterday and today regarding my search for a young lady by the name of Charis Sharpe. She was a good friend of mine in the two years that I did A-level in Wellingborough (don't ask, just do a yahoo search for the town - it's where I was brought up), but when I went to university we lost touch. But then ... well I'll let these notes speak for themselves.

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I was minding my own business really. I thought about checking me e-mails in various accounts, and sometimes I read one email and it leads me to a certain link and before I know it, I’m off on a wild goose chase. But this is a wild goose chase to beat all wild goose chases.

For some unbeknownst reason I signed up with Friends Reunited (FR) a while back. I didn’t get in touch with anyone through it as such. As a result I left it alone. Then on a whim in me bulk box (yeah me spam mail really, which under normal circumstances I’d delete without looking) I found another FR email. Continuing the whim thing I clicked it to see what was on it and apparently some other punster from my era had signed up. Carrying on this whim jig I went to see who it was and lo and behold if it wasn’t one of my friends from the latter years of my Wrenn days. And when I say friend, I actually do mean someone I enjoyed relating to and talking with. Indeed, such was my enjoyment that I wrote copious pages of letters talking about this, that and nothing. Her name is Charis Sharpe. So that got me all excited and so I endeavoured to reply back to the message she left in December. Oh but the blighters at FR have the system set up so that you have to PAY to get in touch with the people! What a joke – pay just to talk to someone? Not me, mate. So I embarked on a mission to find Charis Sharpe.

Now if she worked in a normal place that has a contact number, this would end here. But no, she works at the Globe Pub Company which is actually a subsidiary of a larger company that’s buying up a few pubs in the area then going to leave them to it. So their contact details are vague to say the least. So to get in touch with anyone in Oxford (pictured) is easier said than done. But I search on, and for anything that I find, I will keep you updated! (Time: 13:39)


So I contacted this guy through another contact that I got from a phone number I received after calling a pub which is meant to be run by Globe somewhere in Hemel Hempstead. The guy’s name is Mike Henderson for whatever that’s worth. He said he called Miss Sharpe, left my number and if she wants to call, she’ll call. Dude, that’s a roundabout way to leave us vaguely advanced a little bit from where we were. In any case, I’m hopeful that she’ll get in touch again. It’ll just be good to get a link from them days and she was alright when it came to writing. Perhaps not as verbose as my good self, but still enough to whet the intellectual appetite.

So here’s the message she left in December.

Hi Chris,

Its Charis from Wrenn. How are you? It's been ten years since I last saw you, boy does that make me feel old!

So you work in training now do you? Do you enjoy it? How come you're all the way up in Stoke on Trent? Is that where you went to uni?

How are your brother & sister? I still remember them too. Do you stay in touch with anyone from school? I do with one or two, but i'm not in Wellingborough anymore either, I live in Oxford now. I work as a deputy manager in a pub (surprise!) but i'v come to the conclusion that it isn’t my life’s calling!

It would be lovely to hear back from you, I still recall all those long letters you used to write to me, I had those for years.

I hope you reply,

Charis x

The quest continues. More updates as they arrive. (14:05)



I’m starting to write this at 15:58 and I’m just beginning to recover from roughly an hour talking to Charis! Wow – she actually called this afternoon! Can’t remember the time … hold on, it was 14:40 that she called (thanks BT). Well thanks to Mr. Henderson for living up to his word. There is even an acknowledgement to Friends Reunited for playing a role in getting me in touch with someone from my past.

I was so excited to hear from her (she's the one on the right). It was like being sent back in time to a Christopher Dryden that I forgot existed. The reason for all the emotional reaction is just because I felt it was important for me to establish a link back to who I was and where I’m coming from. I remember Charis as a good friend. We’d talk on a range of issues and have a laugh. She was to me a person who could consider deep issues, but didn’t necessarily stay there. She wasn’t a part of the in-crowd and that was also appealing. She was intelligent without being a nerd, which was also intriguing. She could have fun and be silly without remaining immature. Ahhhh it’s just good making the link again.

Having done so, it is weird. Weird in the sense that it’s been 10 years since we really talked. Needless to say quite a bit has happened in 10 years. I’d like to think I’ve grown in that time. I think I’m a different person to who I was then, and mostly for the better. So what am I looking for in making this link again? At the moment, it’s just to savour a friendship that meant a lot to me. Really, Charis should have got an invite to my wedding. Really, Charis should have got an invite to the dedication of my daughter. Still, such is life, and as I’m learning, the past is only meant to assist you in the present, not to hinder. I am really excited to have got in touch with her again – and I will now embark on the mammoth challenge of writing a LONG piece of prose now looking to encapsulate what’s happened to me in 10 years. It’ll be a good thing to do in order to remind me of the journey God has taken me on and also highlight where He wants to take me in becoming His son.

So in essence although the search for Charis is over … kinda, the search still continues. I found it oh so intriguing finding out about Charis. Just as I find it fascinating really getting to know about people. Now I can continue that search and more accurately stay on the search for God – finding me out at the same – and finding myself fulfilling my purpose for life. (16:11)

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