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Lunch with a Friend

"Huh?" I said out loud dumbfounded at the realization that the restaurant was on the other side of the street from me currently. I presumed when looking up the address that it was on the east side of the street, not the west side. Oh, how wrong I was on that assumption. I heaved a sigh as I looked left and right before jogging across to the door of the restaurant in a hurry.

Two minutes earlier as I was walking to the restaurant, I sent a text message which said, "I'm on my way. Be there soon."

Merely seconds after I had sent it, I received a response. "Don't worry, I just arrived."

After reading what she had wrote, I took a breath with a small smile. Today was a day that I was looking forward to in a long time. I had planned a day to have lunch with a good friend that I haven't seen in a long time because I came back home after my contract finished from a faraway town, and she was busy with work. The fear of asking to set up a lunch get together kept on nagging me since I always thought I may be a little bothersome to always ask her to meet up. It's a little bit of a complex developing here, as well as whatever I could muster up for my self-confidence. I always wanted to say "I'm sorry" but kept it in deep down in my heart.

When something finally looked up on the bright side, I celebrated a little on the inside and  it was very surreal. It's like a clash of two worlds together.

I took one look up at the restaurant's sign to ensure I was walking into the correct place, and immediately noticed my friend from the back. As I walked cautiously to the table she was sitting at, I said happily, "Hi Jenny! I'm sorry if you waited long."

"Hi Jackie." She had shook her head, smiling. "It's nice to see you again."

As I sat opposite of her after placing my jacket on the chair, I replied, "It's been a while, Jenny. How have you been?"

"I'm good, busy with work as usual, what about you?" she said after pouring me a glass of water from the full pitcher.

"Thanks," I said in a whisper, then I replied to her question, "That's good to hear. I'm doing alright. At home."

Jenny asked, "How was work?"

I pulled at my hair as I closed one eye and sighed. "It was busy, but frustrated at the same time. Troubleshooting can be a bit of a pain." Then I diverted the conversation topic by looking down at the menu, and asked, "What are you getting, Jenny?"

While looking at the menu as well, she had responded, "I'm not too knowledgeable on Thai food as all I know is pad thai, so I will most likely going to go with that. What about you?"

After skimming the names and pictures on the menu, I pointed at a particular name as I raised both of my eyebrows in confusion. "I think I'll try the khao soi, I'm feeling adventurous today."

"That sounds good. Do you want any appetizers?" she asked.

"Let's try this," I said after pointing to another dish that I wasn't sure on the menu.

After calling the waitress to take our orders, I sat back relaxing a little bit as I looked at Jenny closely as if I was studying her. While Jenny was catching me up on updates on her life in work and other interesting tidbits, I couldn't help but be grateful to still be connected to Jenny in this way. In most cases, I think keeping in touch with old co-workers can be tough especially if there are no mutual friends or any connections between us. We both have our own separate lives going on, and it's easy to get bury into things that is right in front of you. Just because I think about my friends constantly and worry about whether to contact them at this particular time doesn't mean the other side will always do the same. With not much stuff going around my life, I find it comforting to hear what other friends are going through and this is a way for me to smile.

Jenny tilted her head, bringing her eyebrows as close together as possible. "What's with that goofy smile on your face? You're creeping me out, stop that."

I couldn't help but grin even more after Jenny mentioned it. Then I shook my head as the waitress came with our food. "I'm sorry about that, but after all of this time, I'm just glad to have you as a friend."

Before digging into our food, Jenny replied, "Anytime."

Despite being only one and a half hour long, it felt like an eternity to just have fun with a good friend on a relaxing afternoon during the weekend. I thoroughly enjoyed every second of it.

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