Tuesday, August 15, 2006

HBJ ...

I met you in 1999 just a few months before leaving Japan, and we became fast friends. Since then, I've loved keeping in touch with you ... even all those teary-eyed international phone calls. Your funny, little voice always makes me smile. I still tell the story of how you taught English to unsuspecting Japanese housewives and made up arbitrary rules of gender for animals: dogs are masculine, cats are feminine, monkeys and birds are always male. I hated the times we lost contact, but I'm glad to know you're not too far away now ... in Toronto. Even though you never (ever) gave me a photograph of yourself, I remember your Enrique Iglesias features. (Without the mole!) You prepared a Middle Eastern feast for me - falafel and all. I introduced you to Morrissey and Laurie Anderson, and you shared your Fairuz with me. I hope we always remain friends.

... Happy Birthday, Jihad.

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