June 27, 2004

Smashing....absolutely superb weekend. It started off with a trip to Pasir Ris chalets on Saturday with Stephanie and her family and even though I wasn't enthusiastic at first, my lethargy soon turned into excitement when her Uncle Roy played Stephanie and myself in pool. Now, I'm a very competitive person and once I delve into something, I would most likely want to come out as some sort of a winner but unfortunately in this aspect, I was found lacking. Uncle Roy gave me the thrashing of my life. Hell, even Stephanie beat me! I'm going to have to train doubly hard if I want any form of vengeance but that is going to have to come later.

After leaving Pasir Ris, we made a trip down to visit Dad for the final time before I leave. I've got to say, I terribly miss Dad. Even after placing the single white chrysanthemum next to his column and squatting down to say goodbye, I felt a pang of sadness. Stephanie wanted to know how Dad was like and as I described him, she told me that she felt as if she missed him as well despite having not met him before. That's my Dad for you. He's just charismatic in his own special way and by his funeral turnout, you could judge what kind of a man he had been.

We proceeded to catch an extremely well-written movie next, in the form of "Windstruck". Now for those of you who have not caught it and are skeptical because it's Korean and not from Hollywood, get past those inhibitions. The movie is filled with funny moments, sad tragedy and twists. Even some of the twists I could not have expected and these twists are so well woven into the fabric of the storyline that you get a huge surprise when you finally think about it and examine the entire tapestry. At one point in the show, I felt tears welling up in my eyes and that says something because I almost never cry in shows. After the show, I stayed over at Stephanie's place and it was in a way, bittersweet. We enjoyed each other's company but I'm sure in the back of our heads was "6th July". Sigh.

Met up with Patrick, Jack, Jiehan, Xianli and Chris this morning for K-Box. I think in some ways I've grown past that hatred I used to possess for all things Chinese. Nowadays, I find myself listening to Chinese songs and having new-found abilities for reading "fan ti" words. That's amazing because I used to be a 50-something Chinese student. It was great hanging out with them and talking about life after NS because I think a way, we all were forced to be people we were not in camp. It was good to finally meet up with them without the politics in camp, work worries and whatnot that used to hold us back a little during meetups. No-holds barred, spontaneous, fun. It was just refreshing. And Patrick topped it off when he commented that "the shit is all behind us now". That struck a chord with me and I smiled to myself because it was really all over and the sun seems to shine brighter than ever now.

Then the highlight of today. My testimonial soccer match before I depart for Australia. ACS vs Buddies. It was like a dream come true! I scored two goals and the team won 5-2. But that wasn't what pleased me. It was the fact that so many people were willing to come down for the testimonial match and then I realised, maybe I'm not so alone after all.

All these different sets of friends wished me goodbye in the best possible way I could have dreamt of and I just want to thank each and every one of them. But it only makes things harder doesn't it? It's going to be hard on the day I leave. Hard not to shed a tear.

Traveller fell apart at 10:43 PM

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