Thoughts on Friendship
When I first came to America, I found Americans to be rather shallow. Smiling at you one minute, and then recoiling if you tried to get closer. I find relationships with most Americans to be superficial, and I suppose Americans would see me as a cold person because I do not automatically smile when I see them, etc.
I came across a post on Quora about international friendships that underscored this point of how the definition of friendship and close friendship varies from culture to culture, and from country to country.
To quote a commenter on the post,
In France, your friend is whom you went to school with.
In Brazil, your friend is whomever is welcome to go into your house when you’re not home, and raid your refrigerator.
In China, your friend is whomever you can ask to sell you merchandise at a loss, to help your business through a tough time.
For me, gaining and losing some of my foreign and Nigerian friends over the past few years has got me thinking about what denotes true friendship to me as a person, and whether my Nigerian-ness can sometimes be an obstacle to me making new friends, or whether this is simply due to my social awkwardness alone.
I think that in Nigeria / to Nigerians, a friend is a combination of whom you went to school with and whom your family visited often as a child, and a close friend is whom you can bathe or shower with, when in a hurry.
What do you think?
Who is a friend in Nigeria?
As a Nigerian, who is a friend to you?
What does friendship mean to you?