Today is Thanksgiving here in the United States, and I thought I’d take a break from my random stories about Asia to do something fitting for a day about being thankful. What I’ve got for you today is a mini-sequel to my Pockets Full of Soup writing piece from earlier this year. If you haven’t read that post already I’d suggest not going any further with this writing piece until you’ve done so.

Ok, I’m going to assume that you’re now familiar with the Pockets Full of Soup post. My sequel today is a very brief tribute to another person I’m thankful for in my life. His name is Ed.

I think I first met Ed a few weeks into my Freshman Year of college but it wasn’t until my later college days when we became closer friends. During those days he and some of his friends would hold a weekly game night at his apartment and we bonded over things like gaming and hilarious internet videos. Ed loved to host people in his home. He was also a gifted teacher, passing on a lot of practical wisdom to me such as living frugally and prioritizing what’s really important in life. I can also thank him for nudging me towards my first journey to Europe and the many insights he gave that influenced the way I travel to this very day. Perhaps most importantly, however, Ed held me to account during a particularly egregious moral failing of mine. That was probably the single greatest act of friendship he ever gave me. A true friend doesn’t look the other way or sugarcoat the situation when you’ve messed up real bad.

Happy Thanksgiving to any and all who are reading this. I hope this is a blessed day for you, and I especially hope you’ve got people in your life that you’re thankful for too.

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