This weekend, while organizing my photos, I decided to also organize my expenses for the week. I opened a food delivery website as usual, but was suddenly prompted to log in again. The image that appeared before my eyes was a search result from two years ago in the spring.
I remembered that at that time, L told me he had decided to go on a one-month backpacking trip in Europe. I said it’s great to go out and see the world while you’re young. He and his friends set off on a backpacking adventure through Europe carrying large backpacks.
The distance between us increased tenfold, despite being over 800 kilometers apart. Often, my nights were the time when L was about to set off, and it was during those moments that I came to appreciate our intertwined mode of communication. During the day, we were both busy with our respective lives, but during those overlapping hours, we shared our experiences.
The day before they arrived in Budapest, L and his friend got off at the wrong station and got caught in the rain for a short while. After waking up in Budapest, both of them began feeling unwell and running a fever. I searched online for easily obtainable foods that would be beneficial for their illness and provided the information to L. Initially, I had intended to order food for them through a delivery service, but after researching for a long time and not finding any viable options, I had to give up on the idea.
“Are you really trying to figure out how to order food for me?” L asked me, moved, when he woke up after a nap and heard me sharing the process of my failed attempt to order food for him. Luckily, after waking up, he and his friend gradually recovered, and their illness came and went like a typhoon.
Later, L sent me a postcard in which he wrote that he wrote me a card every time he took a dump. I looked at him, puzzled. He then talked about how he encountered many difficulties during his travels, especially when he got sick in Budapest and had to stay in an uncomfortable backpacker hostel in a foreign country.
At that moment, he actually thought about giving up and going home the next day since he had already completed half of his trip and had visited many places. However, when he saw me encouraging him, he suddenly had the strength to complete the journey.
While in Hungary, L shared his travel photos with me, and as I was stuck in the office, I said, “It looks so romantic, this place. ”
“Yeah, do you want to come and be romantic with me?” L asked me.
These days, it’s common for anyone to make such comments, so I just laughed and texted him back: “Of course it would be great if I didn’t have to work to earn money to buy plane tickets! The tickets are so expensive.”
Not long after, L sent me a photo of his credit card and said, “If you use my card to buy a plane ticket online now, I’ll wait for you here and won’t leave.”
At that moment, I was shocked and wondered if he was up to something fishy and trying to trick me into flying somewhere, and then I would be stuck overseas with nowhere to go. On the other hand, I still can’t quite grasp my feelings at the time. I just loved people who did what they said they would do. Such people were really rare.
At that time, I was filled with confusion about the world and had lost my sense of bravery and curiosity. Every night when I was alone, I would think about what was wrong with myself and why that person had to leave. I think L must have asked himself the same questions, “What’s wrong with me? Why did she say no when I asked her out?”
The two of us, carrying scars inflicted by others, were like a sudden summer thunderstorm: our relationship progressed quickly and abruptly, just like how it ended. But we were left with a romantic story and mutual blessings for each other.
I’m glad that I loved you – the warmth you gave me while I was in a bad place, as I slowly pieced myself together, continues to support me even now.
It’s like the feeling I had when you were sick that day; now I finally understand what that was all about. Since then, haven’t we both found our best selves?