Those Goodbyes

If my life in Malaysia were a book, it would be divided into two parts. "Part 1" of the adventure would consist of my life as an MS student. And "Part 2" would be life as an expat, an OFW, if you may.

Part 1 feels like it happened ages ago. Granted, it only spanned two years and I'm now going into the fourth year of Part 2 - but it does feel like it happened in a completely different lifetime. A lifetime where I lived in a monkey-infested dormitory. A lifetime where I had hospital, police, and immigration run-ins. A lifetime where I relied on KTM and Rapid KL buses but went places anyway.

I relied on my graduate research assistance scheme and a couple of odd jobs, but it was a lovely lifetime, even more because I had a lovely set of friends whom I treated as my surrogate family here. As Part 1 drew to a close, the story with that crazy bunch drew to a close as well. I don't think anybody really counted on it. Some got married and moved to India, moved to Singapore. One took up further studies in Canada. Some went back to the Philippines to fulfill obligations as well as to start anew. My family in Part 2 is somewhat different from the family I grew up with in Part 1.

Oh, but they're still there. And oh, we still see each other around. A couple of them crisscross across Singapore and Malaysia and sometimes it feels like nothing's really changed. But things have. There's a nostalgic feeling to it, too.

But I guess that's the bittersweet thing about moving from one chapter to the next. You must first conclude one part in order to get onto the next. And it's often difficult, especially if you'll have to deal with a lot of goodbyes.

But you have to do it to begin the next adventure that awaits.

So that's it for Part 1 of the story. This 2015, I'll be sharing about Part 2. So, goodbye, "The Adventure - Part 1". Hello, Part 2.