Never Farewell



“I saw you from the podium when you walked into the room.” he said. “Mmhmmm.”  I respond skeptically. He looks back at me amused. We exchange smiles.

I am seeing him for the first time in a couple of years, yet I never tire of his boyish charm and sweet, soft spoken demeanor. Every time I see him I wonder how someone changing the world, can stay so well-mannered, humble, gracious and kind. I’m glad I made the trip out to see him in the mean rain. It was an unforgiving rain, slamming against our clothes, hair, faces. I can’t remember the last time I disliked rain so much.

The night progresses full of good conversations and fun times. It was getting late and we escape from the group. Safe in the warm comfort of his massive suite, we quickly forget the beating we took from the rain, talking about anything, everything in between endless laughter and playfulness. The hours are flying by too quickly and it’s soon time for him to leave. We look down onto Tokyo’s dawn from the window. The soft fog caresses the city. The sight is breathtaking. “Thank you so much for helping navigate such a strange place and making time in Tokyo so special.”  he says and departs to his next destination. I crawl back into bed.

Tokyo is a city of frequent good-byes… but not farewells. I hope.

(From the archives – originally posted last year, around this time.)


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