Song: Di Antara Kata - Fariz RM

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Yes I remember that night. The night when I found her on the net. The night I finally realized the naked truth about human friendship. If there was ever a friendship.



I was in the middle of my internet addict behavior. Developing websites, being a regular in chat rooms, surfing like crazy, trying out every new technology I could find. You know, all that jazz. Suddenly I was thinking about her. Then without expectation, typed her name on a search engine.

Then, there she was.

She lived a wonderful life in Atlanta, had just finished her business school, was a freelance web designer, just about to go to another school majoring in multimedia. She's heading to the stars.

I was so happy to finally find her, I missed her a lot.

I was in awe watching all of her works on the net: her online journal (blogging technology was not even born yet), websites she developed, web awards she's been honored with, her graphic designs, her concepts. Two words: a-mazing. And I knew it for so long. I knew she's something. I looked up to her. I wanted to be like her, remember?

I spent the whole night 'til dawn exploring her websites, reading her journal, everything. She had this section on her personal website, about people who she felt close to, put their photos and wrote what she felt about them and how they meant to her.

Don't get me wrong. I did not expect my face was gonna be there, for sure.

But Tia was there. Yes, Tia was there.

I was devastated. I dunno. It's just what I felt. I finally had to acknowledge the slap in my face that I meant nothing to her. I know, my not being on that page did not necessarily mean I meant nothing to her. Naturally, we human have our own preferences on anything in this world. Natural things, like blogs I don't read. Friends I don't call. Relatives I don't visit. It doesn't mean they don't mean a thing to me, 'coz they do. They do a lot.

Maybe it's just because Tia was there and I was not. It messed with my head, because I always thought the three of us were one package together.

I was crushed to the bone. Like what Rachel said,"There's the ground, ten feet of craps, then me." There I was. Under ten feet of craps below the ground.

This may sound even sillier and pathetic to the extreme, but I shed a tear that night. A tear for a friend I always loved dearly, who never loved me back as much as I did, and nothing I could do about it. Besides, love is not love if it's conditional, isn't it? I just never saw this coming, that's all.

Look, I don't have words and logic to explain and rationalize why I felt this way and reacted this way. I don't. Maybe someday I will. Maybe someday I will.

A few days later I called Tia and told her about Ully's website. She contacted her, and they got in touch through emails.

I guess I was not ready to be in touch with her again. I remember I sent a couple of messages through ICQ, and when it didn't get any responses I was sort of relieved. I didn't know how I would go about talking to her again. "Hey, girl, how are you? I miss you so much, but don't bother though. Never mind, I don't exist."

Awkward.

Years went by. I got married, moved from one job role to another, until I left my last office to be a freelance forever.

Tia is a very busy high-career woman now. I often lost contact with her, but we always manage to get in touch again. I mean, how big is Jakarta. She is a law counsellor focusing on IPR. She's still the same sweet and nice girl I once knew. She never changed, she's my Tia.

After I left office life, I looked up Ully on the net a couple of times, hoping to find her latest journal. I searched Friendster, search engines, Orkut, MySpace, hi5, any communities I was invited to. All turned up nothing, only her old site that was RIP since 1999. I still bookmarked it anyway, still loved the design and all.

Until a couple of months ago, I sent an email to her old address (the same address I once sent email to, but got no response).

The next day, I received her reply.

..to be continued..

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