Didn't We Almost Have It All ...
I met Kevin in Taipei almost 5 years ago on the last night of a nine month soul searching journey. He was the most delightful young man at the tender age of 19 then. I recalled it was Christmas 1991 and
"It was a dark and smoky night
..... and also last call (3 a.m.) at the local disco
. We talked awhile then Kevin took me for a motorcycle ride in the cool night air around the sites of Taipei.
He did not want to go home. In silence, we were both bewildered at how lucky and unfortunate to have met with such ill timing. Back at the hotel, we made love and embraced each other in tears till the break of dawn. At 6:00 a.m., Kevin went with me to the airport where we said our goodbyes. Despite the tender moments, I thought (and wanted) it to end because I knew I had to pick up my life again in Canada.
Kevin kept writing regardless of my discouragement of a long distance relationship (differnt passports), not to mention our age differences (12 years) and poor communication (broken English was our common medium). One year later we met again in Taipei for about 5 days. This time I discovered his true qualities which made me want to really love and care for him. But I still followed my head and not my heart and continue to discourage a long distance relationship.
Time passed as we continued to exchange letters. Often they had to be translated on both sides to convey topics of a more serious nature. In the Summer of 93, Kevin had to enroll in the army for a mandatory two years term. I discovered later that it was my reluctance to acknowledge him as my lover which drove Kevin to push prematurely for the arduous army life in place of the pain he felt for me. As a result, I missed my chance to be with him again for the next 2 years. Kevin was later stationed on a remote island (Kinmen) very close to mainland China.
In August, I went to Taiwan anyway, hoping to surprise Kevin with a visit to his army camp - even if it was only for one day. (This was difficult to arrange considering that I was a much older non-family male visitor.) It turned out that I waited over 6 hours just to see a glimpse of him for 6 minutes. I shall never forget the expression of awe on his face when he first saw me. Kevin was so happy despite that we cannot hug or display our affections. But I also saw his tears and knew how sad he felt being drafted to a cruel and homophoebic environment.
From that point onward, I realized that the six intimate minutes we shared in public was enough for me to give Kevin love and support for the next two years. I did not want him to lose hope or think that he was abandoned or forgotten by me or his friends back home. So I vowed to write him every 2 weeks for the first year then every week for the second year counting down the days until we can be together again.
Most Taiwanese boys are not entitled to a passport till they served their two year time in the army. I figured having physically been with Kevin for less than 10 days yet keeping our feelings alive for over 4 years must add up to something special. So in 1995, Kevin spent almost half a year with me in Toronto, Canada on a time limited tourist visa.
Toronto was so wonderous to a young boy who has never left the confines of his small island country. Everything was new and exciting. He was incredibly overwhelmed by the freedom of expression here compare to Taiwan. We held hands almost everywhere we go. Not being able to work legally in Canada, Kevin could only take up edcuational studies. He quite enjoyed his daily ESL classes and met many new foreign friends. I encouraged him to auditioned for a private school in the field of advertising (he studied in a prestigious art college in Taipei) and he passed with flying colors.
Unfortunately, neither one of us (including our families) were rich enough to make our dream of being together come true. The conclusion was either I borrow $20,000 dollars for his school tuition (2 years) or I try to declare Kevin as my same sex spouse. I was ready to commit all the way with either option. But, as the song goes,
sometimes love just ain't enough
We had our irreconcileable differences which I won't belabour. At the end, we parted in January 1996 when Kevin had to go back to Taiwan for his sister's wedding. The following April, we met one last time in Hong Kong in hope of restoring the faith that keep us believing in each other for almost 5 years. I can finally let go now because I know I honestly have tried my best.
This page is dedicated to you, Kevin, for I still love you deeply. I wish you well.
Up Close and Personal
The Single Guy
Mad About You
Love Is ...