3 friends I still contact
Today I called with 2 different friends. I think it's amazing how we met and still continue to regularly have contact.
One person I met through a language exchange app 3 years ago. She's a Chinese woman living in Japan who's studying English. We decided to do weekly calls to practice our respective languages. She's Chinese and living in Japan. I was also living in Japan at that time, and learning Chinese. We mainly speak in Japanese (which is good practice for me to upkeep my skills now that I'm back in America.) We sometimes practice dialogue exercises from textbooks in the other language we are are learning. During my final week in Japan before returning to America, we were able to meet up once in person for the first time.
Another friend I met soon after returning to America. I visited my alma mater and the Japanese language student club I had started there. It was moving to see how well it was doing, and how much better it ran than when I was in charge. They did fun exercises to practice Japanese. One week, I was paired up with a girl who was born Japanese and adopted by American parents. She's studying the language with hopes of visiting Japan again someday. That was the only time we met in person, but somehow we kept in contact, and get on occasional calls to catch up every few months.
Earlier this month, I had a call with another Japanese friend who I met at my university in Florida through a cultural exchange program. A group of 20 or so students from my university and a group from a Japanese university were chosen as a "bridge", and each group went to the other country and university to visit for a week. I wasn't part of the program, but many of my friends from Japanese class were. One of my best friends were not around at the time when the Japanese students came to visit us, because he was studying abroad in Japan. So I unofficially took his place to hang out with them and show them around. I made a point in meeting all 20 of the visiting Japanese students. The following summer, I visited Japan, and was able to meet that group again. I tried keeping in contact with several of them. But only one has continued to remain in contact. We have monthly calls to talk, practice language speaking, and keep this "bridge" alive.
Of all the people I met in university, in Japan, and since returning, it's surprising to reflect on that these three are the main people I continue to have consistent contact with.