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Skype "Best Couple" and "Best Friendship" Awards!

We would like to thank all of you for submitting stories for the Skype “Best Couple” and “Best Friendship” Awards. As Skype blog team, we truly enjoyed reading all your entries.

Among the stories, many focused on “friendship or “love”, but there were also quite a few related to “family”, and we felt anew how Skype is a must-have tool to nurture ties of “friendship”, “love” and “family. Therefore, we thought it fair to add a Skype “Best Family” Special Award, in addition to the Skype “Best Couple” and “Best Friendship” ones.

Enjoy reading below the stories selected for the Skype “Best Couple”, “Best Friendship” and “Best Family”.

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●Skype “Best Couple” Award

We have been together along with Skype for 7 years, and we will continue to be together.

Thumbnail image for 高橋ご夫妻.JPG

It was Skype that helped our long-distance love relationship for 5 years since we first met in Thailand. We met for the first time in 2005 in Thailand. Since we met, we had been using on-line e-mails as our long-distance communication tool. Cell-phone rates at that time were expensive, and international calls were still high even with prepaid discount. It was then that I learned about Skype. The main reason that I chose Skype was because of its better sound quality. I compared and considered other services that were developed from chat systems. However, I thought a good sound quality would work better for us to be able to feel closer to each other, so from around that time I started talking with her through Skype.

I still remember that the greatest impact was when I started using Skype “Unlimited World Subscription Plan”. Although we could make free calls, it was still not easy for us to always sit in front of our computers that we had to use SMS or international calls when we were not on Skype. That was when I discovered Skype paid services.

At first there were some concerns, but after using it for two months there was a positive surprise. Whereas I used to pay about 30,000 yen per month for international calls on top of my cell-phone charge, when I started using Skype I was able to keep my cots down only a few thousand yen per month. Moreover, I now could start calling a cell-phone in Thailand directly from my Skype and communicating anytime, anywhere.

After 5 years since we had first met, we got married, as an international marriage. Having had a long-distance love relationship between different countries, I absolutely feel Skype had become an indispensable tool for both of us. Since last year, we have been living happily together in Japan, and my wife continues to use Skype’s paid plan to communicate now with her family.

Skype will continue to have an essential role in our family. I hope it will be as useful to others in the world in the future. Please keep up your great work.

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● Skype “Best Friendship” Award

Girls Talk with Skype
A Skype Long-Distance Girls’ Friendship!
How to be always together thanks to Skype, no matter the distance!

There were five of us, girls who had met at an early morning Chinese class.
Although of different age, profession, lifestyle, somehow we immediately clicked.
We started going out regularly, an all-girls’ party, to watch Chinese movies, eat at Chinatown or in a Chinese restaurant of Ikebukuro…
In very little time, we were much closer than friends.
One day, while we were enjoying some wine, “A” who had always been the liveliest of us all,
Was very quiet.
Since everyone was worried, she started explaining that she had decided to work in a design agency in China. But, even though she looked preoccupied because her Chinese was still insufficient, she wanted to take up the challenge, a once in a lifetime occasion.
We all could imagine the stress of going alone to China and we were ready to support and encourage her.
“A” went to China with a smiling face and we were left, the 4 of us, with a huge void. We who had been like one person.
“C” suddenly broke our sad silence with a cheerful voice: “Why don’t you come to my house next Sunday? There is something I’d like to show you.”
On Sunday, “C” greeted us at her place with Korean food.
First, a glass of wine for all. Then, “C” announced with pride that she had a special guest.
There was a computer in front of us. Then who appeared via Skype if “A”, totally unchanged!
“Did you get used to the job?”, “How about the food?”, “Have you met anyone nice?????”… We had so many questions.
With Skype, we can now meet any time.
The 5 of us are one again, thanks to Skype.
Thank you, Skype! Thank you for preserving our friendship!

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●Skype “Best Family” Special Award

“Grandpa and Grandma, Happy New Year!!”

Looking at her grandchild’s toothy smile on the screen, my mother (83 years old) forgetting about the pain in her knees stood up from her chair and almost holding the monitor, said to her grandchild “Happy new year, Fumi-chan! I am so happy that you are looking well.” My father (86 years old) looked at her beaming with a smile. It was the New Year in 2011 during the high school junior Fumika was studying in the United States.
She was always with her family. Her grandpa and grandma were so concerned about their granddaughter who was spending the New Year abroad also they were worried if she was fine and not lonely.

It was 8 years ago when Aya, Fumika’s older sister, joined from Boston, the New Year celebration and that grandpa and grandma first experienced Skype. Although occasionally the family saw and greeted each other on Skype, my faraway parents kept being there for their adorable granddaughter who was studying abroad, as frequently sending letters by airmails regardless of their weak sight. Although it was not easy to get over the beauty of writing letters, Skype, that allows us to be able to share a moment and to see each other, gifted them with sheer pleasure.

Because my father was born in January, before long, we started combining the celebration of his birthday with our New Year celebration. Looking at his grandchild singing “Happy Birthday” together on the screen, “What an incredible world we are living in.”, my father said.
Ryota is showing his younger sister on the monitor the Osechi cuisine (Japanese New Year cuisine) and a cake he is eating with gusto.

My parents, who were born in the early Showa period, must be longing for their grandchildren’s bright future as seeing them at the New Year celebration via Skype, also as being amazed by such social progress in the 21st century.

Viva Skype!!
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Thank you for all your entries!

For more information on Skype, visit www.skype.co.jp or follow us on Twitter (https://twitter.com/skypejapan), Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Skype)

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