Returning to the San Francisco Bay Area after 7 1/2 months is like an encounter with an old friend. The weather here is mild and temperate compared to the past dozen cities I've been traveling through. Summertime in the Bay is a chilly 13-20 degrees haven, unlike the sticky, humid, stuffy Vietnamese air I've been breathing the past six months. It's a blessing really, how beautiful California climate is.
When I first arrived, it felt like I had never really left. But gradual realization that my friends have changed, and acknowledgment of how I've changed has led to the acceptance that I could never return here. Berkeley was so essential for both my scholastic and personal development, but it will now have to remain so. I need to move forward. My near future is set because of the Peace Corps, but life post-service is absolutely uncertain.
During an afternoon drive to San Francisco a couple of days ago, my best friend Brian and I agreed that some things about our relationship will never change; and we are gladder now than ever before to have each other in our lives because we can depend each on each other. There are few people who could serve as my confidante; I can only list a four. I trust them because I know I could tell them anything, and they would never be shocked by my actions. It's a great relief knowing that there are people who would always love me and never judge me. I always try to do the same for anyone who asks.