Aside from food, another "F" that I'll definitely miss when the day I'll say goodbye to Malaysia eventually comes will be - insert sentimental music here - my friends. Aww. Enter waterworks. People come and go, yes, but when they cross our paths, some of the most important ones imprint marks that we will forever keep in our hearts.

I've been blessed with friendship crossing many different cultures and religions. When I was studying, in addition to my TBC friends (note to self: write more about this later), I was also particularly close to two Iranian girls. We were groupmates in some of our IT projects. Because of them (the girls and the projects), I was introduced to Persian cuisine.

They cooked when we spent afternoons at their house going through software and code. I remember eating fried chicken with some kind of red seeds or berries. I'm not so good with names of food. I just eat and eat whatever anyone sets in front of me. I do recall a sticky sweet called Halvoc, though. It tasted nice with pistachio.

Persians seem to be fond of sweet and sour things. Well, sweet things then sour things, not sweet and sour together, like the Chinese.

Speaking of Chinese, working introduced me to the Mandarin-Hokkien-Hakka-and-Cantonese-speaking community. I mostly identified with Malays during my two years of studying. But these days, I fee more Chinese, somehow. I also feel Indonesian. Very Indonesian. I wonder. When my friends hang out with me, do they feel, in a way, Filipino, too?

Just a thought.

But that's Part 2 of The Adventure. I'm getting too far ahead.

Back to Part 1. In my dormitory, there was an Indian girl who lived a few doors down. We never got to be that close, but I remember she was fond of watching Bollywood and Filipino series.

I had Malay friends who invited me to eat in their open houses and to watch movies in their rooms. I got to witness a Malay wedding, too - the bride's side, where the groom was the one walking down the aisle towards his woman.

They taught me their language and we compared it with mine. And though it was short, the friendship was precious and worth remembering. One even emailed me the other day. She lives in a city far away but she had lots and lots of stories to share.

I believe all our lives are interwoven for a purpose. Friends from "The Adventure - Part 1" have, in a way, come and gone. But I know know the friendship will surely live on.

Half-eaten Halvoc.