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July 1, 2007

Posted by ash in about Friends, about Memories & Reflections.

If I don’t write a title, this entry is going to have a number like 58 in the archives.

This weekend has been hectic, my weekend started from Thursday because I took a day’s leave and only worked half day on Friday.

My vice principal hung the phone on me on Thursday (did I write that already?) and I am very pissed with him. The people in this school have no feelings, I didn’t do a lot but I contributed a fair amount, and in a different way from the other ang mohs in the other schools, and now this is how they treat me. My supposed farewell party is crap.

“When would you be free?”

“The week after 13th.”

“We are busy so I am afraid no one can go. How about 12th?”

Yes. It’s always the locals who are busy. We expats are not busy. We are forever taking leave, going surfing and spending our higher-than-them salary. Now I know how an expat feels.

So on the 12th I have to go to my farewell party which is incidentally also the welcome party of another teacher. On the 13th, I have a morning flight to Hokkaido. Damn. Oh yea, but that sort of proves their theory that expats are always taking leave and spending our higher-than-them salary. But they forgot their bonuses, they have bonuses we have none.

Bonuses in summer and winter. You should have seen the number of people at the department stores yesterday, everyone eager to use their bonuses. Gucci and LV was so crowded with excited girls, the bigger department stores filled with middle aged people buying suitcases and handbags. Everywhere you went, people were flashing their money and their wallets.

Having said that, I was guilty of going on a shopping spree yesterday. Was supposed to meet Mao for her shopping but ending up buying things even before she came. After she came, it was worse. Whatever she bought, I also bought.

Bimbo antics aside, I was really happy to meet up with her. It’s been so long. The last time I saw her was at the Amuro concert in September. Speaking of which I am unable to go this year because it’s in November! 😦

I never used to take farewells seriously until now. Back at home, farewells meant nothing. It just meant that someone was heading for greener pastures and it had nothing to do with me. If it’s a friend, he/she would come back one day. If it’s a colleague, my life goes on. Farewell parties were just last minute cake and soft drinks affairs, there was no love.

But for the first time I feel the sadness of farewell. It’s hard to describe the feeling. You say “goodbye, take care!” and as I marvel at how lucky I am to meet this person, I also feel the pain of knowing that I may never see her/ him again. Would I forget them? Will I be forgotten? A strange feeling of regret rushes in during the last waving of goodbye / hug. I should have spent more time with them. I should have appreciated them more. While I mutter the customary “Come to Singapore if you have the time!”, I feel the tears well up in my eyes because I know they probably won’t. Even if they do, under what circumstances would we meet?

On friday, my elementary school kids gave me the bestest ( I know there is no such word) farewell ever. It was raining and I was crying buckets. All the little kids came to hug me and held my hands, saying “Please stay cheerful in Singapore!” They made little origami and presented me with letters. It was really a touching moment for me.

The same evening, Nico invited me out to dinner. We never met much the whole time I was here. In the end, he graciously paid for my meal and said that that was the least he could do. It was a very awww…so nice moment.

Yesterday evening as I hugged Mao goodbye, I started thinking about all these things. I came home and watched the farewell video Jess and gang made for me 2 years ago. I am going to go back now, 2 years passed by so fast. But will I have the chance to meet these fantastic people I met in Japan again? I don’t know.



1. Suika - July 1, 2007

You know who the geniune people are my dear… and even if circumstances do not allow you folks to meet up any sooner…you will always be somewhere in their heart….and so…just let the good memory continue to flows 🙂 *hugs*

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