I think it was fate, even though some memories are kind of blurry right now. The first time we met was the first day I arrived in Japan. We lived in the same university-owned apartment. I didn’t know her name back then. Just that she decided not to go to shiyakusho that day. I decided to go because some people were going as well, and I knew that I would be too lazy to go later. I knew that it was going to rain, but what I didn’t know was the downpour would go on all day, unlike Jakarta rain that would only last for around 2 hours. I got home soaking wet.
We met again the first day we went to Kyoto University to attend the orientation for international student. I remember the presenter talking about how the big earthquake hadn’t occurred for around 100 years, meaning that it could happen anytime that year, and he said it like it was nothing. I can’t recall how we got together, but my first memory of talking with her was when we were walking together near the campus. It was drizzling and she was trying to connect to the free internet at the bus stop. She didn’t bring her umbrella, and I did. She cancelled her plan to meet a friend, then came with me to a nearby McDonald’s to meet my friend. That friend. He was working on his research like usual perhaps, or something similar. She could tell what was going on from that single meeting. We went home by train and talked a lot.
I think the first time we went out was to watch kimi no na ha. I cried at the beginning of the movie. It was breathtakingly beautiful. Every time I listened to the soundtracks of this movie, I thought of her and our time together. Trying out Tinder to improve our Japanese (legend has it that it’s easier to learn a language if you have a native speaker as a partner), nomihoudai and the night I thought never happened, baileys and milk, the good yakitori served by strangely cute staffs, obsession towards chicken liver, hotpot, silent vintage books & cat-themed cafe, thrifting in kawaramachi, free stuffs from her part-time job at the convenience store, sweets, our heartfelt conversations.
If only we live in the same city, maybe one day we can live in the same city. I was quite devastated thinking that our meeting seemed star-crossed but we only got to be together for a mere few months. We decided to do a powerpoint-presentation-video call thing multiple times in a year to update each other about the highlights of our life. I really love it about us. We have our own things. Still, it’s not half as good as being in the same city.
What is her name? You don’t have to know.