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Bon Journal

Talk till we drop

Schipol airport.

I arrived early. So did the plane from Cologne.

She walked out the gate with a broken suitcase. We took the train to Amsterdam Centraal and hired a locker at the station.

As neighbours and childhood friends, we grew up on Okinawa. Our lives since then couldn't be more different. But more and more we learned how similar we were.

Tightly wound, we needed to relax. Open-minded, perhaps we could find a way in this sin city.

I took her on a tram to Museumplein. The open space was hardly Amsterdam.

Then we went to Dam Square where an outdoor festival was taking place. I showed her the famous Winter Garden in Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky.

After dinner at a Thai restaurant in New Markt, we walked around the red light district. Window shopping was a special pass time for tourists here.

Life is about experiences. When you can't share it, you recall it. Hard to believe that we have only shared our childhood and the occasional family celebrations (weddings etc) together. She showed me photos of her children. I have not been part of their lives. They were strangers to me, though their mother was not.

Unknowingly, the afternoon had turned to midnight. We took the last train which stopped one station before ours.

We arrived late. So did the taxi.

Bussum-Zuid station.

29 March 2002 Friday