First Love

I wrote this in a comment on Mac's blog:

Ada. We were only 10 when we first met. We went to the same school, rode in the same shuttle van, and laughed at the same jokes. Then on my birthday, she gave me a gift -- a small, square notebook with a bright yellow hardcover to write in. She said, "One day you will be a writer." I held dear to that notebook for as long as I could. The notebook is long gone now, but she stays in my heart.

We eventually met again when we were in high school -- she stayed at the same old school, but I went to a different, all-boy school. We hadn't seen each other for years until one day we literally bumped into each other at a restaurant. We talked, and we laughed at the same jokes again. I asked for her number and we went out. We went to our elementary class reunion, and I thought she was the prettiest girl there.

Two days before I came to the US, she took me to Stanley Beach. We watched the sun set as we said our goodbyes. I didn't know what to do or say. We just sat side by side, until the time came when we must leave our history behind. I never kissed her.

We exchanged a letter or two after I started my life in the US, then I never heard from her again. 15 years later, I found a letter among my parents' things. She had written me, one last time, but I never got the letter, and I never replied. To this day, I don't know where she is, what she is doing with her life. To this day, I have no idea how hurt she felt when she never received a reply from me.

To this day, the name Ada still makes me sad.

What's yours? And how it affected you?


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Comments

Jaya Krishna said…
Hey... Life is everything about taking things in your stride. Whatever happens to you, life dosent stop for anyone, goes on.... Should be the same with you ... Its good you had some good things to tell in your life .. but the future is still promising...
May be the next time you bump across some ol' frens you maynot be late and lazy as you were before.. Life has taught youa lesson... So, allthe bestfor your future ...
Ray Wong said…
Yes, I'm well aware of the future and how life goes on, and I seldom wallow in past regrets. It's more like nostalgia for me. Little morsels of memories that feed my hungry soul once in a while, about life's lessons, about loss and gains, about love.
Wow, Ray. Beautiful story.
Mark Pettus said…
Ray, I think those relationships that don't have the opportunity to run their course - because we move, or because we're involved with someone else - or for any number of other reasons - leave us with a sense of melancholy, and the vague wish to go back and find out if we missed out on something real.
Ray Wong said…
Absolutely, Mark. That "what might have been" continues to think back on our lives and wonder. Personally, I love nostalgia. I think that's what makes us human and unique. I think nostalgia is beautiful. One of my favorite movies is Cinema Paradiso, which tells a story of nostalgia to perfection.
September said…
what a bittersweet story - I think many of us have an Ada in our lives -- I know I do.
I can see now how there's a bit of Ada in your story.
If she runs across your book - and I hope she does, she'll know where to find you.
Ray Wong said…
That's the plan, September Skies. :) That's the plan.
andrĂ© said…
I'v been reading your blog from start to finish, and I've been thoroughly enjoying it, but there has been a constant deliberation in my mind as to whether or not to actually read your book. Well, this entry ends that deliberation. Now, I simply must read your book. (And this really isn't generally what I normally go for -- but yea, now I'm sold).
Ray Wong said…
Andre... you just made me day. Converting you would be my pleasure. However, be warned that you might really hate the book. :)
andrĂ© said…
I doubt that. You've been willing to expose yourself so much in your blog, that I'm sure I'll find you (the author) somewhere beneath those characters. Besides, if anything, I'll read your book just to gain a better idea of how to write prose, though, I hope, I love the story as well.
Ray Wong said…
Thanks, Andre. That's really encouraging to hear.

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