Memory.. Little threads that hold life's patches of meaning together. ~ Mark Twain

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

An Old Friend In Canada

Less than 3 weeks ago, an old friend from Canada, Christine dropped me a e-mail suprise saying that she would be down in KL for 2 weeks. And of course I was pretty excited to meet up with her!

Why the excitement, you asked? Well, imagine this. We were classmates through Std. 1 to 3 before her family migrated to Ireland. I couldn't remember how but we managed to track each other down and we corresponded through letters (that time where got e-mails?). Her family moved to Canada a few years after that, we lost contact but somehow we managed to find each other again and we wrote letters again. We kept in contact till we both left high schools, she even sent me a picture of her taken during her convocation. As we both continued on to college and then uni, we lost contact again. It was only 2 years ago that I managed to track her down through the net (Oh yes, the power of the internet!) and we've been e-mailing each other ever since. So when she told me that she was coming down to KL, both of us were very excited lar!! We've not seen each other for 16 years woh!!!!!

Christine stayed with a few of her relatives' places and had no contact numbers. When she called me, we immediately made plans to meet up for dinner and that I would pick her up from wherever she would be that evening. I was really nervous.. How would she look like now? How would she be? Would we have loads of things to talk about? Or would things be awkward and silent? I called up a couple of our classmates for the dinner, but only Martin could make it. The rest either already had plans or they are abroad, like Gummy teaching English in Japan. No problem.

Prior to this, I was busy with my office shifting to a new location. I rushed home as soon as I could, took my shower and went to pick her up. When we saw each other, memories of our friendship just came pouring out and it was, gosh.. Great! Really couldn't describe the feeling when we hugged each other, right in front of each other was an old, old friend whom we've not met for 16 years already. I brought Christine to Basil Thai Nudle Bar in Bangsar Village. We chatted about the past as we waited for Martin to turn up. When he did, we had a greater time. We talked about the horrible teachers we've had back then. About who used to have crushes on someone else. About how everyone else is doing now. Martin had to leave early but we managed to take a couple of pictures.

Christine and I stayed on till 10pm and we talked about relationships, our families and our friends. I called up a couple of our classmates and let her speak to them. However long the phonecalls would be, it didn't matter. What mattered was that although she couldn't meet the rest, at least she could talk to them and remember their voices. I was darn sure that the rest of them were happy to talk to her. *smile*

It was still early after we left, so I brought her to our school. It was quite dark there, but we could still see the structures and all. I stopped in front of the entrance for a while, stopped by the side of the school for a while, drove to the carpark, then to the field, then to the classroom buildings, then to the canteen and back to the entrance. We practically went around the perimeter of the school site lar. Christine was so glad, and she kept saying "I remember this/that!" and mentioned a few incidents that occurred here and there. If it was daytime, we would both definitely park the car and run around the school. Hehe..

Before I dropped her off, she gave me a bag of Canadian goodies and kept telling me that whenever I visit Toronto, accomodation is provided. When we hugged for the last time, we promised to keep in contact and suddenly I felt sad coz I don't know when would we meet again... Not another 16 years, I hope!


Canadian goodies from Christine

I hope she had a great time. At least I know that she was happy she managed to talk to some of our classmates through the phone and that she got to see the school, where she spent the first 3 years of her schooling days at. As Christine quoted, "it's something I would never, ever forget for many, many years to come". I don't know about you, but to me, keeping in contact with old friends like her is not about comparing who's doing better and all. To me, friendships like these keep me grounded. They constantly remind me of the times when we would use to play 'getah', Police & Thief, the 'bluff bluff friend him/her' times, suck honey from the 'bunga jejarum', when boys were bullies or girls were gross. When we treated each other as equals and all we cared were to have fun together, to experience our early schooldays together. That's who they are to me, and for that, I'll always be grateful for their friendships. *smile*

Another classmate, Genius Chick would be coming down from New Jersey with her husband sometime early next year. Her family migrated to The States after Std. 4 but like how it is with Christine, we still keep in contact with each other. I honestly am looking forward to meet up with her!!


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