the feral foursome gathered for a farewell dinner last thursday evening. wendy has been way too busy to meet often, so the last time all four of us met was a long time ago. our last group photo was taken about 8 years ago.
we got a little trigger-happy.
the K.A. is now travelling the world with her fiance mr cheng, the chin yuen, till they run out of moolah. the next time i see her will be when they pop back into singapore for 2 miserable weeks sometime early next year. and it's off again they go. the two of them have been preparing and saving for this since forever, so this travel bug is going to be a big one flapping strong for a few years.
the K.A. and i met when we were mere 12 year olds in the same secondary one class. i still can't explain why, but there are just some people you can't help but get along with like a house on fire. different chemistry with different folk i suppose. the K.A. and i were unstoppable, incomprehensible and nonsensical... amongst other things. we hungout in school, after school, everywhere. her dad used to drive us to parkway parade, where we'd try to sneak into toys r us (kids below 13 or 14 must be accompanied by adults. bleah!) or go play games in the arcade. after school, we'd run around in school, and sometimes sit and sing in empty classrooms or corridors. i can't remember exactly what it was that kept us so busy, but i remember running around alot. we ran all the time... chasing each other around, or just running from place to place. there was always something fun to do with the K.A., even though it could be the simplest thing.
we understood each other easily and perfectly. we were both a little weird. we laughed at the weirdest things. she had (and still has) a heart of gold and the wickedest sense of humour (because we find the same things funny? :P). we shared an indescribable bond.
she was my first real best friend, the first step away from the primary school ideology of supposed best friends. she was my best friend until i broke under cruel peer pressure from taunting classmates around us, who were probably jealous of our friendship. youngsters can be the most cruel creatures in the world, without knowing the true extent of what they can inflict. it wasn't long before the fingers were pointing, and the tongues were wagging about how the two of us should get married.
i was too young to know then, that i shoulda told them all to just fuck right off and take their whiny bitchass faces somewhere else. i didn't know what else to do. the K.A. and i were definitely not lesbians. the noise in our ears and all around us everyday was unbearable. we drifted apart gradually...
until today, this is something i still think about. i should not have let it happen. i should have had more faith in myself and my friend, instead of crumbling like a cookie and going with the flow. going with what other people wanted. doing what other people wanted to see. being a sheep. being a spineless sheep.
and that, was the last time i let myself be swayed by peer pressure.
perhaps that's why i am the way i am today. i am rebellious, whether with or without a cause.
i almost lost a friend of a lifetime. good thing we enjoyed horsing around with each other too much to stay away for long. :) we drifted for a good year or so. being split into different secondary three classes didnt help, but wasn't enough to make us strangers. we managed to maintain a decent friendship through the rest of our secondary school days, even though it wasn't like the blast we had at the start.
for the 2 years while she was at jc and i was bopping around from this to that, we'd keep in touch @ nicole's for karaoke (we'd bring our own LD's), or at various cheapass karaoke joints. boy, we were serious about our singing then. jasline, my classmate from secondary four, was once made to judge us by listening through the phone. one by one. heh.
i was in archi@SP and she was in NUS when she started blading, and got me into it... and that was when the real fun began. throw canoeing into the picture and we were grabbing every second we could after our respective classes to make our way to east coast. i believe we used to blade and canoe about 2 or 3 times a week at one point? sometimes both on the same day.
most memorable canoeing session was the day there was an oil spill. we were covered in black oil. haha... we knew there was a spill, but still went out anyway because we didn't wanna miss a session. after returning the canoes, we were walking along the pathway to the bathrooms and parents were literally pulling their kids away from us. as if we were sea monsters or something. so we made strange howling noises and chased each other around.
we had stopped singing at karaoke joints, so singing while blading was extremely therapeutic.
the day came for me to pack up and leave for australia. i guess if she was sad that i was leaving then, it would be something like what i'm feeling now.
throughout my years in australia, my emails with the K.A. were the most consistent. it wasn't alot, but i always did remember to tap out a short update or a longass grandfather story to her now and then. i guess it helped that there is a certain way that the K.A. and i talk (or type) which i do not do with many other people, and it is certainly a style that i most enjoy.
everytime i came back for a short visit, i felt like i had never left. we would always pick up right where we left off. no matter how long i'd been away for. no matter what major or minor things had happened to either of us. no matter what.
it was towards the end of 2001 when i really started to miss the K.A., and all my old friends back here. this was sparked off because a very dear friend in melbourne, who had been my confidante for almost 2 years, had suddenly turned away from me and the world. it was then that i began to miss the stability of my steadfast old friends who have known me forever.
of course, there are the peeps in melb who rock my world. you know who you are. :)
but i knew it was time to come back, for that and various reasons (such as intense worrying about my mother). i still have that email from K.A. telling me that it was the best news she'd heard in a long time. that kinda just sealed the deal.
it has been a wonderful few years being back in singapore. and a big part of the credit belongs to the K.A. without a doubt. blading was squeezed in whenever we could... though very, very few compared to before. even when we couldn't afford the time for blading, we'd just meet to slum around and do nothing (less time-consuming than a blading session). we even quit our previous jobs at approximately the same time (without coordinating it).
a coupla months after i got back to singapore, she dragged me along for the Runway Cycling event which includes bladers. basically, a whole immensely huge buncha peeps are allowed on the runway @ paya lebar on this one day every year to cycle and blade your heart out in a friendly race. we were meant to go for the family track, which was 6km. prior to this, i had not bladed for yeeeeeaaars. at the 4km mark or thereabouts, we realised in horror that we were on the wrong track (hur hur). we were up for the 16km deal under the hottest, swelteringest sun. she asked me if i wanted to go for it, or stop at 6km and waddle off the track.
i guess if i was with anyone else, i woulda chosen to stop. in view of my weak left leg which is prone to cramps, i woulda chosen to stop.
we made it to the finish.
our recent esplande-katong adventure reminded me precisely of this incident. if it was anyone else who had wanted to me do what we did, i woulda said "fuck off".
i guess this post will never end if i just sit here and think about the things the K.A. and i have done. so i better go on and talk about the food we ate for her farewell. ;)
les bouchons. my fave restaurant. with my fave people. not much more i can ask for. :) we had 2 ribeyes and 2 extra tender beef fillets. yummo to the max. free flow of excellent fries... and i thought the salad was nicer now than before, with a wasabe mustard dressing. strange because i dislike wasabe. but i thoroughly enjoyed this salad, though nicole hated it. :P
a fully satisfying dinner, and a happy reunion it was.
the K.A. and i spent our last few moments (for now) sitting on the planter box outside the AMK MRT station, at midnight. we managed to be silly, as usual. when we parted, my heart was heavy. i knew this parting was harder to do than my previous aussie-to&fro's. i knew she was sad too.
here's hoping my dearest friend will see the most fascinating things in all corners of the world, experience the fullest and greatest that anyone can possibly hope for, and breathe the air of a thousand lands. in various altitudes.
and please, come back in one piece so we can tell each other more corny jokes and you can teach me how to lisp properly.
take care, agent rawkus! with love, agent hawkins.