i’ve never had a tenth year anniversary before. doug and i are going to celebrate, this july, our seventh year together since we first started dating, and our fifth wedding anniversary comes this fall.
but ten signifies a decade. ten is an era. ten is something to be proud of.
so it was on june 14th, 2008, where ada and hoa invited us over to celebrate the fact that our group have been together for ten years now.
leading up to the date, i was very excited, but reminded myself that while it is most definitely a fantastic celebration, it’s not like we never get together. the evening will play out most likely like any other evening we gather for food and conversation. i suppose i downplayed it as a way to curb my enthusiasm.
when the night was done, however, i was very wrong with my theory. true, there was the same feeling like always – that sense where i find myself surrounded by people so familiar to me that they are like a second family. there was a sense of comfort. and the rhythm of conversation. yes, we do have a rhythm that’s different from any other rhythm i know. it’s the best feeling in the whole world.
all those common elements were there that night but magnified. on top of that, there was definitely something more. i would say that there was a strong sense of purpose as we gathered that night. and i think each of us definitely felt their rightful place in that group – both original posse members and new ones.
ada had created a bowl where throughout the evening, each of us were to jot down a memory that stood out. at the end, ada read it all and we tried to guess who wrote what.
when she got to the first one i wrote (which was one of the last ones read, ironically), she read out loud, “being a part of ada and hoa’s wedding party.” and though we were all in the wedding party, which is one of the reasons why it was such an important event to remember, she immediately turned to me and asked, “did you write that one?”
there was something about how she asked me without skipping a beat was like a symbolic gesture of what the evening meant to us – that we just knew each other that well.
at one moment during the evening, tai asked at what point was the group completely formed to create our ‘asian posse.’ i reminded him that it was the beginning of dragon boat season back in 1998, when both him and i joined the team for the first time. i was carpooling with ada and hoa… we went to pick him up before heading down to the lakeshore. i was sitting in the back seat when he climbed in. he hadn’t realized i was sitting there and started to talk to ada and hoa before even settling in. meanwhile, he was shoving his back pack into my face, wondering why it wouldn’t go any further.
while i felt myself being squeezed against the passenger door next to me, he finally realized that i was there and began to apologize while laughing at how ridiculous the scene must have looked.
it’s odd that at that moment, we all just thought it was a funny mishap that had little significance at the time. who would have thought, ten years later, we would find ourselves around a table, talking and laughing about it all over again, as if it were yesterday. anyway, that was the day that started it – when tai finally joined us.
doug and i had brought over a bottle of sparkling wine. just before dessert, the bubbles were poured and we all raised our drinks to toast the last ten years and to the future of our continuing friendship.
i couldn’t ask for a better night. i will forever remember it as it was… and look forward to our 20th.