Thanks for the company, Francene.

Thanks for being here, Francene.

First, I wanted to post this image since I'm exploring presets for my ACNH screenshots. Second, I didn't know this screenshot would resonate a lot to me. I know it's weird to feel attached to a villager (or an NPC); but the same can be said to any character in a movie or a novel. Still when I look at this picture, I recall those real memories when I played the game. 

The weary eyes, the fatigue coursing through the body, the short sleepless nights after, as well as the joy, relaxation, and humor involved in each game -- all of it is real. I mean I wrote about playing ACNH when I had COVID. I've missed the game from work during the exams administration period. We all feel and experience something when we play videogames, hence the nostalgia.  

When my sister moved out to another province, it felt like a piece of me was taken away. It was a sudden move but it had to be. I've had a lot of questions in my heart and mind after. Will I move out to another place too? What will happen to me in the future? Am I going to be lonely from now on? Some questions were heavy, some were silly - but I keep coming back to play this game to unwind while carrying these burdens. And then there's Francene. 

Francene was the FIRST villager who responded with a dialogue of being absolutely worried while I was absent. She asked how I was doing. A "snooty" villager. It's true that snooty villagers are toned down in New Horizons. But when Francene also said that she was not the same without me, I paused for a few seconds as it touched me. There was Francene. And I am still here carrying through.

I know it's a game. But I felt touched by such a string in the game. And left me imagining how much more if these words came from a real person. Frankly, for a moment it felt like her words came from a real person too. As if she witnessed and accompanied me through the waves in life and my farthest reach. So here I am on the fifth paragraph just because of one picture. My humble island which was nothing except for trees, weeds, and rivers, now a bustling community after two years. A lot of things have progressed and had permanently changed in my life. And Francene is still here.

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