June 6, 2011

Meaningful conversations (I) – What’s in a name?


It was one of the usual enjoyable coffee-dinner sessions I was having with my favourite ex-lecturer. We were sitting opposite each other in a cafe when she looked at me in all seriousness and said, “Natalie, you do realize that someday you will have to stop calling me Dr. K and start calling me by my name?” After some moments, she added, “After all, we’re friends…. right?”, giving me one of those looks of which to say that I’d better agree otherwise.. Uhh.. yeah, i guess.. I left that comment hanging and didn’t elaborate further. Indeed, we’re friends, but.. You’re so much more than that.

On marriage
“So when are you tying the knot?” she remarked, after we chatted about some of my ex-classmates who have gotten married. Darn, she caught me off-guard again! I looked at her and said, “Not anytime soon. If he loves me, he’ll wait..”
On drinking
I was surprised to learn that she did enjoy a glass of wine once in a while. Nice! I didn’t dare to mention that I was allergic to alcohol not in the way that children are allergic to vegetables..
On writing
“You know, C did quite well for her research paper on MT. But yours was much better,” she declared with a hint of pride. “I think you can do it”, she replied when I asked her if I should pursue a postgraduate degree. Can I really? She introduced me to the research of Adrian Chandler in the area of Vivaldi’s Violin concerti and asked if I was interested to consider doing something like that. After a prolonged period of silence, she declared with more conviction, “yes, you can probably do it”, as if confirming her earlier statement after giving it further thought.
To end the enchanting evening, we took a short walk together, then she insisted that she walk me to the bus stop, “It’s my territory, after all”, and I relented. On parting, she gave me a hug and watched as I boarded the bus. A warm, fuzzy, cuddly, sisterly hug. At that instant, for the first time in months, I felt as though everything was going to work out alright.
Thank you, for your love, encouragement and for believing in me, even when I don’t believe in myself. I’m truly blessed to have a friend like you. (:

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