Dr. TOH and I have two more nights left in our apartment. This is the apartment in which we first lived together. Now, it's hard to imagine a time when we didn't live together. But this was our first home. So it will be sad to say goodbye to it.
Living in that apartment opened up not just another chapter in our relationship, but opened our eyes to a whole social world outside our university-based friends, simply because our neighbours were friendly when we moved in, and we jumped on their overtures. Together with them we tried out restaurants, took swimming classes together, did football training before work, ate marvellous food, played ping pong. That simple generosity and open nature is something I hope I've taken on, although our lack of familiarity with the current neighbours belies that hope. Nonetheless, I want to take it into the next building we live in. Because I have learned, finally, that neighbours should be there for one another, and that's when good neighbours become good friends.*
So while it's sad to leave it, it's worth remembering how much we valued being next door from a wonderful set of people. Because now we're off to the outer boroughs, we get to be a lot closer to a lot of people, including our former neighbours. We get to explore a new neighbourhood, a new park, a new set of shops and restaurants. Find our bearings there.
Five years is a long time in any place. It's time to move on.
*Sorry, could not resist it.