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Reminiscing NANA

Do you believe in fate? What about coincidence? Many times, I feel that there is only a paper-thin line between fate and coincidence. The odds of crossing paths with a random stranger who would somehow become a hi-bye sort of friend and later in life an extremely important person for better or worse, are perhaps pre-destined in a way. Does anybody have such a person in their lives? The definition of friends (or friendship) is however not as grounded, since it resonates differently for every person. While I do have a small yet dear circle of friends, I tend to wonder every now and then just what is it about me that my friends appreciate? My friends and I can be worlds apart, however our friendships would strengthen over time with varied degrees of maintenance. Of course, there are also times when breakdowns are inevitable. For better or worse. Naturally, the uniqueness of our friendships also make neverending talk over coffee and such. I've also realised that some things are best left unexplained (because there are simply no ways to describe them).

I'm reminded of Komatsu Nana and Oosaki Nana, two people who were initially strangers on the opposite sides of the Earth (more figuratively). What was merely a train ride to Tokyo eventually became a pivotal step (thanks to the awful blizzard) which would see both girls form a slightly awkward yet comical and sincere rapport. However, I've got to say that it had to be Shouji's timely phonecall which shifted the girls' friendship up a notch in its infancy. The girls weren't aware of each others' names at that point, and the phonecall triggered the first of many important moments in their lives. NANA (stylised in uppercase) would later go on to become one of the most sought-after friendships. The paper-thin line between fate and coincidence wraps around comfortably like a piece of red thread on the little finger.

I became acquainted with the girls and their world through Nakashima Mika and Miyazaki Aoi's performances in the film adaptation almost ten years ago. The Chinese translation added a subtitle which means 'The Other Me In The World', further emphasising on the girls' same name. I was curious primarily due to Nakashima Mika (by then I had listened to her Best compilation album which includes Glamorous Sky). I picked up the film and the rest is history. At that point, the tankoubon was already at its fifteenth volume. Naturally, I drained my wallet at the counter with a slight hint of remorse.

Music plays a very crucial part in NANA. While I do appreciate Tsuchiya Anna's rendition of Black Stones, it is actually Olivia Lufkin's take on Trapnest which had stolen my heart. In the film adaptation, the love is a little more balanced (?). Glamorous Sky is one of my favourites during karaoke. Endless Story is more difficult to sing. As for the rest of Black Stones, I find Nobu and Shin sinfully adorable. Yasu makes a reliable, wonderful friend because of his maturity and intellect. Over at Trapnest, Layla mesmerises with her beauty and angelic voice. Naoki would be fun to hang out with. Ren continues to watch over Oosaki Nana from heaven (sigh). Takumi is a jerk (no offence to long-time supporters of him).

While life is indeed not always a bed of roses, the unwavering strength of the girls' love and dedication for each other in times of need has effectively paved out bits and pieces that will ultimately lead to an eternal sunshine in their hearts. I understand that Yazawa-sensei has yet to return to the drawing board. Sensei, hope you are doing well! Meanwhile, I shall relish the series right from its beginning. Thank you, NANA.

Eccentrically Yours.

Written by J.Fluffysheep ♪

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