I haven't kept in close contact with one of my friends for years since I moved to Fukuoka. I haven't even let her know that I moved back.
Almost eight years ago, we got to know each other through the Net. My friend, Fiona, came from England and stayed at home with her 3-year-old daughter. At that time I didn't make myself understood in English well, but she seemed to enjoy herself to spend time with me. I really appreciated it. We had a chat at our places over coffee, keeping an eye on our children. It was a pleasant memory, but I was a bit at a loss how to break out keeping in touch with her again after the gap of eight years. For a lazy person, it took a while to put it into action.
Yesterday, finally, I hit the road to look for her English school. I heard from our mutual friend that she opened her own school seven years ago, but the direction was unclear. I was riding my bicycle (this is the best way to search an unfamiliar place) for a while, and then I found her! Coming out, she recognized me.
"You must be Fiona," I said.
"A familiar face!" she replied.
She didn't change a bit. As she used to be, she was affable, warm and cheerful. We had a small talk on the road for about 15 minutes. She said she was going to have a Christmas party with her students in the evening. She was about to be back home for the finishing preparation, so I was pretty lucky to bump into her. We exchanged our new email address, and said "Good-bye for now."
I'm glad I had no problem to speak English with her. Of course, I know I still have many things on my plate...
Well, I wish she'd accept my offer that I just made. It'd be wonderful if I could have another "English Time" over coffee with her like the one I used to participate in Fukuoka.
Fiona's English school is here: BRITZ ブリッツ英会話教室：ＨＰ BRITS英会話教室：ブログ