A Celebration for (Almost) Two Decades of Friendship

The first time we met was when I was a small lad of thirteen. We often recounted that fateful morning with much glee… at least for him. He remembers me as the new band recruit who dressed in purple pants (as in slack, not jeans!) with matching purple-patterned top.

I was a literal walking fashion disaster, and he picked on me. Yes he did, although at that time I was too nervous as it was my first day with the military band.

How would I know the friendship will span over almost two decades?

As we grew up together, proudly as Michaelians – head prefects, band leaders, goody-two-shoes in school – we learned not to throttle each other. We learned to tolerate each others’ arrogance and flaws, we learned to accept what can and can’t be changed.

Over the years, we sure went through a lot of drama together. Oh yes. The nights of long phone conversations, heated arguments under the sun, sobbing episodes during band camp… I remember them.

Soon we reached a point when I left school, and him in university. My letter of acceptance from Singapore came, and was besides myself with excitement. In my last coffee session with him (back then, alcohol is foreign in my dictionary), we talked about a lot of things, but he left me a message that I remember to this day.

“I know you are very excited for Singapore, and you have made this decision in good fate for your future. But had you decided differently, it would have made a lot of difference to many people”

I carry that with me as make new friends in Singapore, where I celebrated most of my twenties. In the next decade or so, I met up with him everytime I return to Ipoh. Those sessions never fail to rejuvenate and reaffirm me as person.

Fast forward to early this year… when I got wind that he was moving to Singapore! Excited was an understatement; I was immensely proud and I can’t wait to show him my life in Singapore.

I want to introduce him to my friends here as was my mentor, my angel, and my friend. For without him, I wouldn’t be who I am today.

He is Liang Hin, whom I have known for so many years that I don’t know what I would do without him.

Now again, we have come to a crossroad, where our lives will take on in different directions. Our “reunion” was short-lived, but I am confident to walk away knowing that our friendship will remain steadfast, true and pure to face whatever fate throws in our way.

It had been so for the past (almost) two decades, it will continue to be so for the years to come.

Thank you, my dear friend.

Farewell Drink with Liang Hin

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