Staring out of the glass windows of the BU School of Law looking at the gorgeous Charles while watching cars whiz by in my periphery, I feel an intense pang in my heart. Not one that weighs me down, but a sweet longing.
I am listening to The XX on repeat and my mind is suddenly an open book–an empty canvas, with the music painting beautiful memories across the vast expanse of my relaxed and focused mind. I miss home. And in this moment, it’s almost like I have a PowerPoint slideshow of beautiful times from my beautiful past. The music is weaving all of my memories into an intricate blur and it’s a vision like no other.
I look at the Charles and I remember sitting at the banks of the Singapore River. This is a place close to heart like many other places locked away in my memory. Clarke Quay is an entirely different place during the day than at night, I sit by the infamous bridge around 3pm, cross legged and staring out (as I seem to do a lot) lost in thought, in awe of the daylight version of Clarke Quay and absentmindedly watching the Singapore Ferry boat traverse the waters. I have precisely one month left to fall in love with Singapore all over again. I feel the wind blow through my short hair and I reflect on my past decisions and what I plan to do this last month in Singapore before I take off to Boston. I also think back to my nighttime Clarke Quay adventures with my two good friends Ester and Addriey, wandering in and out of clubs and always quite hating it, and I wonder what more adventures are to come. Now, I look up at the Charles and miss home.
The view from the BU Law School is great. Peer a little harder and you can see the silhouette of the financial district. I always loved concrete jungles. At least for me, they offer a sense of solitude amidst chaos and bustle; the juxtaposition is beautiful. Walking through a myriad of buildings lost in my own solitude is a feeling I enjoy so much. Gazing at the financial district, I’m reminded of Biopolis–a maze of buildings dedicated to pharmaceuticals and research institutes, situated in the heart of Singapore yet amidst a deep tropical rain forest. It’s the epitome of manmade beauty in tune with nature, 6am jogs through Biopolis are what I look forward to every other day. The cold fog against my skin, the smell of rain, tall glass buildings reflecting the trees around them. I run past the main buildings of Biopolis, Nanos – Aminos – Helios – Genome – Nucleos. That’s my routine. I gaze at the distant Boston financial district and miss home.
Staring out the windows of the Law School, The Esplanade is in my direct field of vision. I enjoy the occasional nighttime stroll at The Esplanade with close friends while having aimless conversations. I look over at The Esplanade and my mind is flooded with sweet memories of midnight strolls through Rochester Road and Sixth Ave. My friend Ester and I walk and talk at 2am on a Saturday night whilst admiring the black and white thatched roof shop-houses–a ruminant from Singapore’s colonial history. We talk about life, we talk about boys, and we talk about the universe. I miss home.
I look up again and I realize I’m in Boston. The XX is still playing faintly and this sweet longing is heavier now. I miss home but I also realize that I’m painting a whole different set of memories attached to Boston and BU and I need to cherish that.
Some day in the future, I’ll be in another city living another life and my mind then will be a brand new canvas with music of tomorrow painting memories of today.