After about a year and a half since I graduated, I finally visited Madison, WI, where I went to college for four and a half years. My friends who went to military came back, so I made this trip to reunite with them.
It's very strange as I write this, but I think I was more excited to go to Madison than going to California and Latin America. Previous two trips felt sort of numb, maybe because it was my first time going there and I guess I didn't know what to expect. Coming to Madison was a bit different because I had spent so much time here, and I was so happy to see my real real friends finally.
On the first night I arrived there, we had a drunk conversation with other people who I went to school with, and they were saying the same thing - Madison feels like home. Another guy was visiting from Los Angeles which is the place I really want to go, and he was saying there isn't no place like Madison (true, only if you visit temporarily).
I was writing this before I got on a plane to NOVA, so I kinda forgot where I left off. Another good lesson - writing needs to be one in a one sitting!
Anyways, on the way back, I thought about what it means to live a happy life because, everybody back in Madison seemed to be happy. You know, people coming out to the terrace after work and drinking beer with their loved ones and friends, enjoying the nice weather. Virginia isn't as bad, but if you start comparing Madison to other big cities where there's a lot of pressure, things start looking somewhat different. And I think it's a conscious choice that one makes - you could choose to live in Madison or Manhattan. I've always thought I wanted to live in a city with tall skyscrapers, but after a few days I spent in Madison not as a student, I came to realize city life may not be everything that I've wanted.
Another thing I learned was the importance of friends. The guys I met this time were my best friends. We entered college together, and spent so much time, doing some things or doing nothing. We would talk a lot about random stuff and a majority of things we've said were bad words of course, but it was just so much fun talking to them. It was our first time seeing in real life after two and a half month, but not even a single moment felt awkward. It was as if the time has continued without a single second's gap. I was able to tangibly feel the importance of friends and what it means to be one.
Well now the trip has ended, and honestly, it's been one of the most meaningful and enjoyable trips I had. The fact that my friend Andy turned $60 to $500 doesn't hurt. But it's more than that though. It was another chance for me to look at life and think about it, cherish our friendship and hope for the even better times tomorrow.