I first met OI (literally translated as ‘cucumber’ in Korean) in the university. He’s an international student from Kosovo. My first impression of this guy is that he’s as cool as a cucumber. Thus, the name OI is stuck with him since then. We first started off as total strangers. I still remember three years ago, there was once when I was collecting donation for a charity project in the university, I actually approached him but he just walked away without a word. How snobbish he was back then, I thought. But then, we eventually became friends and over the years, I managed to earn his trust and he began to bring down his barriers bit by bit (he was rather mysterious at the beginning of our friendship). Since then, we became each other’s best supporter and partner in crime. We’re there for each other during the ups and downs. We look after and believe in each other like no one else does. Although we are of different creeds, we bask in the difference of our cultures and languages. He took the initiative to learn Chinese while I did the same for his native language too (Albanian). It’s hilarious and exciting when we converse in foreign languages; we’re even gutsy enough to sign up for the Korean class too! The best times of my university life are mainly spent with this Mat Salleh (westerner) buddy of mine. One of the most remarkable moments was when we went for a road trip to Penang together to celebrate New Year 2015 with my family! We visited the Georgetown street art sites as well as other tourist spots in the Pearl of Orient. We also indulged ourselves in the popular Penang Road Assam Laksa and Cendol which tasted heavenly for our palates! I don’t know if it’s fate or destiny playing its role but his eldest brother applied to become a lecturer in our university and guess what? My current supervisor is his brother! OI is not only someone who brings out the best in me but he also sees the best in me and is not afraid to point out my flaws so I can improve and be a better person. In October this year, we’re going to complete our studies and go on our separate paths. Nonetheless, I hope our friendship will keep going like how it always has because a true friend like him is indeed a priceless gem.