I'm not an emotional kind of guy. At least, I'd like to think so. If things happen to me involving emotional extremes, I'd normally just sleep it off, run a mile or blank it out altogether. I'm good at that. I think it runs in the family. We're just not fond of emotional situations and avoid it like the plague.
Of course these days, there's no avoiding these situations. Either things have become no longer financially viable for some or the emotional pull of home have just become too overwhelming for others. Normally it's a good dose of both.
I've been in Ireland since that summer in 1999 with only a few short breaks back home since then. So, if my maths doesn't fail me, I would have been here, in this foreign land for 11 years this summer. That's a better part of decade. A long time.
Obviously, with the passing of such a length of time, there are bound to be changes in my life or in this case, changes to other people's lives that directly impact mine.
I came to Ireland as a student. And, like most Malaysian students, we'd be sent to faraway places in groups. Out of this larger group, I got to know a great bunch of people. We were somehow each other's support group. A type of dysfunctional family trying to make do with whatever we had.
For some reason, throughout that amazing decade, our paths have always crossed, time and time again. It's not like we set out to be close to each other but like I said, it just turned out that way. It's got to a stage where even our kids have fallen in that same loop.
So, maybe it's not a goodbye to friends that have and will go home. It's just the end of a long overdue era. I'm sure our paths will cross again in the future. I'll probably end up buying the house right beside the same bunch of guys when I eventually get back to Malaysia!
Until we meet again...