Many years ago, when I was a university freshman, I met and became good friends with a girl named Tomoko who was on a semester of study abroad in Houston. After she returned to Japan we kept in touch every now and then, but for the most part lived completely separate lives.
I always remembered Tomoko and earlier this year, during my first trip to Japan, emailed her to see if she was in Tokyo or Fukuoka. Months went by without a response — I had an old email address — until Tomoko randomly checked her email and saw a message from me. How amazing it was for me to then receive an email from her telling me that these days she’s indeed in Tokyo with family and child.
Today, after 11 years of not meeting her, I had lunch with Tomoko and her baby at Hashida Honten (Keyakizaka area of Roppongi Hills). Even after so much time had passed we still got along just like old times and had so many things to talk about that one lunch alone would be hardly enough. I promised her that the next time I’m in Tokyo (which will be soon; I’m hooked on this city) we’ll have another meeting.
It’s things like this that give me such a strong mind to act as if I’ll always see someone again, even if I won’t. Operating in this way means that I’ll not only cherish the times we have together but also have something wonderful to look forward to down the road. And, in a funny way, it prevents me from doing or saying anything crazy that generally only comes out when someone believes he’ll never have to see someone again.
What a great day in Tokyo.