I found it an ironic blessing to be presented with the opportunity to come in contact with people I haven't seen in years, today. It's funny to me how those interactions go. The shaking hands, the "how-do-you-dos" and so forth. It brings with it a swirlly mixture of old and new, of familiar and unfamiliar when you realize that the person before you is both what you remember about them and also someone completely different. At first it doesn't even cross your mind until you walk over to them, make that eye contact, looking them in the face and shake their hand and when it's done to realize that somehow that seemed to take a second longer to do than when you shake anyone else's hand. Like you're both trying to pull out something from a dark and dusty; long forgotten corner of your mind. You linger to try and hold on to it like trying to hold on to a dream you had the night before.
What makes it even more ironic is when you start recalling the past and see that you and that person weren't very close to begin with but somehow the memories you share make them part of who you are today and therefore they play a bigger role than you ever imagined. You wonder if your part in their past had the same, if any, affect on them too. You being asking yourself things like "Could I have been a better friend? Did I miss any chance of imparting something worthwhile during the time we were growing up together?" You hope that what they remember are all good things even if the things you remember may be a little good and a little bad.
None of the questions going through your mind have any answer that you can find because you've no way of going back to the past to find out. It doesn't stop you from wondering though. In your wondering about the past, you have the hope that maybe the future will hold other opportunities to see them again and be friends. You hope to have a good influence on them, you desire to pray for them and see them grow in the Lord. You want to keep tabs on them and make sure they are safe and doing well with their families, but all in all, the reality that is so bittersweet is the fact that it will probably be a long time before you ever see them again.