Sometimes, a single word would trigger, and bring back something that has been buried deep in memory. And there are times, a name, would remind you someone that you once knew, but lost in touch with.
Someone was yelling that name while speeding walking on the Long Island Road.
"Jacob, wait up."
A man, probably in his early 20's, stopped. With a baseball cap on his head, he turned.
"I know. Too many people."
In less than a minute, the girl joined Jacob, and both of them walked though the door and entered the next cabin.
Jacob, Jacob. I only know one person with that name. A name that I have not heard or use for more than 8 years.
Jacob... Whatever happened to him?
It all started with a simple "Hello" on the IRC. At the age of self-discovery, I was quite lucky to have felt comfortable being gay. And I really thank the people whom I have chatted online, because they helped me to understand that homosexuality is not a disease; being gay is okay. In the chat room #gayfriends, I have chatted with some great people. Merrick, JoeD, Snakeboy, LINC, and so many others... It wasn't like a consulting thing for me. We chat about everything. From school, work, clothes and Madonna. It was because we chat about things that people usually talk about, my own stereotype toward "Homos" became thin air. We are all the same.
But for "Aikira" is different. It all started up when he send me a private message, asking for my age.
"Finally. Someone my age."
It turned out, Jacob is actually a year older than me. Living in Sherman Oaks, some place that was far far far up north.
Jacob was in the same shoes (no, not Prada) I was. At an earlier stage of discovering his sexuality. Fear and desire surrounded his world. Coming out to his parents, was the last thing he wanted to do, but it's always the first thing in his mind. Yet, the desire of wanting to meet other gay men gave him the courage to take the first step.
He went online and found me.
He was looking for people he can talk to. People who are more interested in knowing him as a person, than trying to get into his pants. He needed someone to share ideas and exchange experiences.
We stayed a couple months as Pen pals, until I moved to San Diego for college.
Funny, how we never talked on the phone. That thought never came to mind.
One day, he decided to take the bus down to San Diego to visit me.
It was a very long trip, but that doesn't seem to stop him. There's something he wants to speak to me about, in person.
After waited at the bus stop for 45 minutes, the bus finally arrived.
Jacob seemed a lot smaller than me in personal. Being 1/2 Caucasian and 1/2 African American, he really had the exotic look and hair.
"Hi. You must be Jacob."
"Gosh, you are tall!"
"Not really. I'm pretty short compare to other guys in the school."
We shook hands.
"Finally. I get to see you in person!"
"Isn't that weird? I mean, we've known each other for such a long time, but never met."
We chatted more as I gave him a tour of the campus.
"So, how many people you have met? Offline, that is."
Then he started to tell me about his plan in transferring to another college, his family problems, and how much he wants to move away.
"Well, you can do what I did. I'm all the way down in San Diego. It is not too far, and not too close from home. At least, I get to be on my own."
"They expect me to live at home while going to school. That's why I want to transfer."
Jacob's parents seemed to be the type, where they fight every day, and both were hot tempered. Financially, there seemed to be a problem too.
"Wayne, I don't know what to do. There are so many things going on right now."
"Then don't do anything. Just go with the flow, and wait until things are more settle, then you can do anything you want."
"I don't want to wait any more."
"What do you mean?"
"Wayne, I'm going to tell my parents."
To be continued....