The story centered around three friends: two guys and a gal, around the time of the gold rush in America. The girl, Kate, worked at an inn and the guys, Kist and Rod, were about to go gold digging. They both liked her but they didn’t let this ruin their friendship. One evening it became known that the girl liked one of them, but she didn’t say which. She would reveal that when they returned.
On their trip they came upon a 14-foot chasm. Kist threw his bag across, took a running start, and leaped. He made it successfully. Rod did the same but, as he was jumping, doubt flashed across Kist’s face. The moment Rod saw it, he lost all confidence in being able to get across. He landed, but started to slip down into the chasm beneath. Kist lunged forward and grabbed Rod’s hand but was not able to stop him from slipping. Rod told Kist to let go, but Kist, feeling responsible, wouldn’t. Knowing that if they continued like this they would fall to their deaths and with love in the balance, Rod told Kist that Kate always looked more towards him. Then Rod took out his knife, stabbed his friend’s hand, and Kist let go. Kist sat looking down the chasm in disbelief. The story ended with Kist, successful in finding gold, finally making it back to the inn some time later. Kate ran out to meet him then quickly asked where Rod was. She had chosen Rod and she thought they would’ve returned together. Kist told her what happened.
Our assignment was to answer this question, “Which is more important to you, friendship or love?” In a class of 6 all except one answered that friendship is more important. Their reasons were the same: Friends stick by you no matter what, while significant others will walk in and out of your life. As I was listening to them an interesting revelation came about: Those who grow up in one place and stay in that place are more likely to have friends from childhood who will continue to be friends throughout their lives. It was interesting for me because, having moved a lot, I don’t keep in touch much with childhood friends, besides occasionally checking up on them on FB. These students attend a university that is not far from where they grew up, so even if their friends don’t go to college they are still close. They are dedicated to those who are dedicated to them. It was interesting as they told stories of girlfriends and boyfriends coming and going, and almost taking on vows of singleness. The teacher jokingly commented, “How jaded you are in your young age!” One kid, who knows that girlfriends come and go, said that he knew that when the right one comes along that it will be great, like having a best friend around all the time. He looked forward to finding that. Hearing their 17-18 year old comments made me smile as I thought about how I got married at 19, knowing at age 18 that I would be marrying my best friend.