Received last March 16, 2011 from a very very good friend in Hong Kong:
As you read this, I will be on my way to New York. It was a long time coming, but I am finally starting the next chapter of my life. However, one can not go forward until one looks back, and what is my time in Hong Kong without you, my friend?
It’s funny how, like most great things, our friendship began on a happenstance. It’s astonishing to think that we would not have been friends had I hit the snooze one more time, or that you decided you want to be alone to study. Alas, it was meant to be. Isn’t it amazing how two people who are so radically different can become the closest of friends? You are an extrovert, while I am an introvert. You are all embracing, while I am selective. You are emotional, while I am rational. You are impulsive, while I am deliberate. You are active, while I’m passive. Yet, somehow, it sort of works.
When we hangout, the energy that radiates off you galvanized me. You make me want to go try new things, visit new places, and meet new people when I would otherwise stay at home. This is why I appreciate your friendship, as you bring out another side of me that is normally dormant.
I’m also glad that I could give you advises now and then, given that you are always so indecisive. How someone so capable at work can be so thickheaded, I would never know. Yet, I was always delighted to gently push you in the right direction. It is quite a feat to survive my numerous lectures, rants, incoherent babbling, and politically incorrect statements. You always judged, but was never belittled me. I don’t often take your advices, but I do appreciate you sharing a piece of your mind with me. Despite the fact that our friendship is riddled with fights, it’s all good natured fun. I saw you as a confidant, a whirlwind of trouble, a student, an inspiration, a cluster of energy, a friend, and a sister I never had.
You probably never noticed it, but I have always admired you. I see you as a modern Amazon of sorts, capable of balancing fierceness at work without losing your femininity. You are always looking to experience new things and to better yourself, this is why I know you will always achieve your goals. I have no doubt in my mind that you will be successful at wherever life throws at you, be it MBA, work, or love. If you can handle MBA, you can handle making hard decisions at life. Don’t let anyone dissuade you from achieving your potential. Trust your instincts. I believe that if you can be more confident in yourself then nothing will stop you from success.
Perhaps I should have said farewell when I was still in Hong Kong. However, farewells are inherently sad, and I did not want to compound more sadness into my mind at the time. It is why this letter is so belated. I write this letter now with a new found exuberance for life, a sense of happiness and gratitude. On the other hand, I don’t believe in farewells. It might seem like eons ago, but I’ve told you that, to me, true friendships last a life time. I still firmly believe that. Friendship is cheap during good times, as anyone can go out and have fun together. Only in hardship can it be truly tested. Know that even if I’m not there physically, I am always willing to extend a helpful hand when you need one.
Unlike you I don’t have thousands of friends, however, I do have many. Out of those, only a hand full I consider close, and even fewer I consider my confidant. To me, you are one of the most important ones. Maybe to you I am just one out of a thousand friends, but it does not matter to me. Friendship is not about seeking balance, nor is it something you weight on a scale. Moon may wax and wane, nations may rise and fall, but one thing I know for certain, I will never change. I know that we will meet again, as physics dictates that the farther you travel, the closer you are from where you started. So, be it in a year, five years, or thirty years, know that you will always have me as your friend, and that you will always have a place to stay if you ever visit New York.
Thank you for all that you’ve brought to my life in the last few years, and thanks for enduring me, as I know I can be difficult at times. I’m going to the future now, see you there.