Says the Relator

I don’t mind travelling far just to be with loved ones. And it’s always my pleasure to take a longer route home to spend time with people.

Was an evening well-spent with some friends. Made an impromptu decision and travelled from NUS to Punggol for dessert, and then taking a longer route home just to listen to stories.

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Says the Relator

Drawn

It’s a blessing to have something to look forward to. Been looking forward to tonight.

It’s a blessing to go the extra mile for people, in literal way as well. Went the extra extra mile today – might have already reached home by now but I’m still a good 45 minutes away from home.

Feels like my heart has grown colder over the past one year. But I hope that I will never stop loving, that I will never stop giving.

—————————————————————–

Interestingly, a part of the conversation went like this:

Me: A relator. That means that while the person has the capability to make friends with a lot of people, the person only has a very small group of friends who are “deemed” (emphasis added with gesture) genuine.

SE:
Hahahaha so am I part of this group? Sekali I’m not.

Me:
You are la, you are. (awkwardly laughs)

In my head, I was just thinking to myself, looking at our recent interaction, I would have invested way too much time and effort if you’re not part of the group of close friends.

Was great meeting everyone tonight. Just wished that we had time to catch-up. But well, next time maybe!

Drawn

On This Day

Facebook reminded me that quite a few significant moments happened on this day…

  • Stood before the cohort after us to welcome them during the orientation camp in 2013.
  • Last service with NUS C2 in 2014.
  • Absolutely loved my internship with Wildlife Reserves Singapore in 2014.
  • Visited 四四南村 and climbed 象山 with Karen in 2016. That was my first time to those places in Taipei.

And today, came back from Taiwan. Missing Taiwan already, but also wished that I didn’t leave this time round haha. But well, back to living life “properly” and no more holidays in the short term! Taiwan ah Taiwan, will see you in another 2 years’ time perhaps.

 

On This Day

Seasons

For the past few months, I had this thought that I graduated at an non-ideal time for a graduation trip around Taiwan. Reason being that the temperature’s as hot as that in Singapore and May was known as the plum rain season. So I’ve been looking forward to taking this trip in March, to behold the beauty of Taiwan in March – with cherry blossoms blooming around Taiwan – that everyone else talks about.

Now that I’m on this trip, I realise how much more blessed I was than I had thought. 

First reason being that I had a friend whom I was comfortable with as a travel buddy. I wouldn’t say I’m the most comfortable on this current trip. My insecurities are slowly killing me; I’ve been feeling rather awkward on the trip.

Second was that even though it was the plum rain season, for some reason it only rained once or twice and had never hindered our plans. Perhaps it was God who held the rain – that’s what I’ve always believed. He blessed us with a good weather wherever we went. This trip, it’s been raining almost everyday. In fact it rained everyday when we were on Green Island.

Third reason was that even though it was warm, it was the season of much naturey growth and hence many sights to behold. Like, the bambi deers that were all around Green Island, the glowing mushroom at Guangfu, and it was the season for mangoes so we had the best mango ice in our lives. This time round, unfortunately, all the mango ice shops on Green Island were closed apparently because it’s not the mango season. Was looking forward to that, but ohwells. But yeah, most shops on Green Island were not opened because it was not the peak seasons for tourists in March.

I guess it’s still good that I have my chance to visit Taiwan in this season. To take a look and satisfy my curiosity I guess.

Seasons

一拍即合

Met up for SE on the eve of New Year’s eve for a time of catching up after 4 months of not doing so. In between we did meet each other but that was in a group setting, so we couldn’t really talk properly. Was pretty surprised when she asked if we could meet on Friday, “[so that] we can meet longer”. Wow because she’s someone who loves staying home alone.

We started off with talking about her job, which I haven’t got to hear about since she started in August. Also talked about mine, family, marriage and eventually about our personalities.

We realised how similar we are, in particular our introversion. Our introversion makes us tremble at small talks and at the thought of talking to certain kinds of personalities. Not that we want to shun them but it just makes us very nervous. Shared with her truthfully that the confidence that people around us see in me is just a facade. There was also this part where we burst out laughing because she felt a burn when I pointed out how similar we are. It was when we were talking about the traits of an INTJ (which I am one) and how this personality has difficulties in handling relationships, so she was like, “Does that mean it’s going to be hard for me to get into a relationship too?!” Well, well…

Went pretty deep that night. We didn’t want to leave, if not for the last train that was departing. Even after we tapped into the train gantry, we stood there for another 10 minutes or so just to talk. And when I got home, she texted to say that she had fun. The texts made me smile that night:

SE: You reach home already hor? Anyway had fun talking to you today. Hope we meet again soon.
WX: Ya reach home alr :) Haha I had fun talking to you too. Don’t be too sad about being similar to me, cos that makes talking to me fun HAHAHA
SE: HAHAHA That’s true. Well 难得找得到一拍即合的人 so I’m not complaining.

It’s a friendship that I enjoy and I’m glad she does too. One of the things that we have in common is the difficulty in having friends that we are comfortable with. That’s what makes each and every of a friend like that precious to me – and that’s why it hurts when they leave.

This is a friend that I’ve always loved talking to, even though I can’t quite find a reason to it and even though we hardly had time together in the 4 years of uni life. In one semester, we probably only had 1 or 2 opportunities to even bump into each other. I remember one time we didn’t meet for the entire semester and we only managed to talk in a 1-hour ferry ride to an island somewhere. Perhaps it’s the quality time that makes each meeting enjoyable.

I feel blessed to have ended 2016 with a friend like this :) You know you had a good time when the night’s not long enough even after spending 5 hours together.

一拍即合

Been a long way

Just met up with some university friends to just chat over lunch. Midway through the conversation, one of them made a sincere apology for what happened in the past and I said, it’s okay. 

Finally a sort of closure I guess. I felt a little uncertain in my approach when the conversation geared towards what happened during the Freshmen Orientation Programme planning process. In a way, I didn’t know what to bring up and what not to – in case we raked up unhappy events.

I was the Project Director in the FOP planning. Midway through the planning, a social explosion took place without warning, and I would say this was the main cause affecting my friendships in the course in the years to come. I grew increasingly aware that leadership was not for me and so, I dreaded the fact that I had to step up as the President of the next Student Committee right after the FOP. Life wasn’t easy then because people who didn’t know me disliked me since the camp. I hated the fact that I was in a course with only 50 people because I felt alienated by most of them who heard something from someone else which I had no idea what.

Many things happened in the planning and I guess my Vice Director and I could have defended ourselves. But all those times, I just kept sensing that God was telling me not to take things into my own hands but leave it to Him. And there were in fact times I found it hard to resist the urge to defend myself – and the fact of the matter would have cost some others’ reputation because of certain things they did. But the call was always to not do that, even if that put me at a disadvantage. In my heart, I had wished that some of these people who were angry at me would rise up as project leaders so that they understand the difficulties involved. 

At the end of year 3 sem 2, we went to Bohol. I didn’t want to be there travelling with a bunch of people who disliked me. But God spoke to me one day through a Psalm, telling me that He will rescue me. True enough, that trip became the turning point for many of those friendships, miraculously.

Interestingly, when the conversation geared towards FOP today, this friend apologised, saying that when she took on some projects at the community level some time ago, she understood my struggles. Her face turned red as she offered her apologies. It’s really okay because God showed up to save the day when we were in Bohol. In fact, the reason why we could sit down together for lunch (and meals before this) is because of God’s intervention. 

What today meant for us was I guess… a closure to things that were previously unspoken? And I’m glad there’s an opportunity like this, because things don’t always turn out this way.

And as I’m here typing this on a bus, I’m reminded of a friend who stuck by my side when I felt unwanted and alone in those 2 years. She came by after FOP, somehow, encouraged me through my presidency in the Student Committee, and celebrated with me when I finally laid down this huge Student Committee rock off my shoulder. I remember there was once a committee member lashed out at me on a group chat, and she found out about it somehow (she didn’t want to tell me how), so she texted to offer her comfort. I’m thankful for this friend. Texted her to say thank you – random, but this is what WX does isn’t it? 

It’s been a long way. So many things happened; so many twists and turns along the way. But thank You God for the experiences and friendships forged.

Been a long way

Challenge

Had another of those rare moments that caught me off-guard and I was surprised by how I unintionally expressed that surprise.

I dropped off at Carpark C this evening thinking that the barbecue pit was at Area C. But lo and behold, it turned out to be at Area G, which was 3.8km away from where I was. I couldn’t believe my eyes when Google Maps showed me that it would take me 1 hour to get there by public transport and 1 hour by walking. Alternatively, 15 minutes if I took a cab. That’s after travelling an hour to Area C from Serangoon. 

While a part of me was reluctant to spend a few dollars to take a cab down to Area G, another part of me just looked at the map in disbelief. Maybe, Google Maps screwed up again – afterall, how big can East Coast Park be? After walking towards Area G for about 10 minutes, I began to realise that Google Maps had not make a mistake. Just then, my friends texted to advise against walking there because they cycled 30 minutes from Area C to Area G. Well, I could rent a bike, grab an Uber, or go home.

For a brief moment, a thought came, “One hour isn’t that bad; I can do this.” And I walked all the way to Area G. That took me slightly over an hour.

When I got there, everyone “very warmly welcomed me” because they couldn’t believe I had just walked an hour to get there. So they were just trying to be funny, helping me to grab food to reward my efforts and introducing me as WX from Area C.

“Did you just want a challenge?” I instinctively looked up, towards where the voice came from. He’s right, but it would have been so awkward saying yes to that. So I gave a vague answer like “maybe” or something along those lines.

I’m surprised whenever anyone manages to read what’s on my mind. Very rarely does that happen, but surprisingly all these years it’s been coming from people whom I’m not exactly close to.

Challenge