It has been just more than a year since the Confucius family was established by not one person but the effort of everyone who formed this great family. OLE January 2010 marked its birth and so far, I can proudly say that it IS the longest standing group from OLE January 2010. As long as it may seem, the memories stay vivid in my head.
Me and Foo Shi Hao were never from this group. I remembered Shi Hao so well. I couldn't pronounce his name so he asked me to call him Foo only and that name stuck to him ever since. I was the first to be imported over by Dr. Sia but I remembered dragging Foo along into that group. I have always been thankful for Dr. Sia for making that move. When we went over, my oh my, what a handsome and beautiful looking group it was. Our great facilitators were Qin Le and Jonathan Teh, 2 names I would remember forever. Though not personally attached to Qin Le, I can safely say that everyone would remember Jonathan Teh.
Jonathan Teh was a boy of many words. Was the main reason why Confucius existed in the first place. My close advisor and brother. Has many experiences which was passed on down to me. I will always be thankful to God for letting our paths cross. A boy who will come once in an eternity, filled with battle scars but will never show them. He was the one who would hold everyone together and the one who would help me fall in love and to keep my relationship strong. I will forever be indebted to Jonathan. But it's a debt I am happy to bear.
As an imported material to the group, I couldn't believe that would be the "all looks no potential" leader. Now, on to the great members who formed up this family.
Chiow Hung: The quiet girl who would only talk to those she felt like talking to (preferably girls). Has the "you owe me a lot of money" look. Would later be my girlfriend. Shocking eh?
Wan Yee: Originally thought as ONE Yee. The sociable one. Chiow Hung talks to her. Never a dull moment with her on the team. Has a lot of amazing stories about her life. Chines orchestra maestro.
Carmen Lee: The other quiet one. Not many memories of her. Originally thought to be my girlfriend.
Clementine Lau: Called her Valentine once. Very very sociable. Friendly, sweet and caring. Something like a mother to the group. Communicates very well and shows concern for everyone.
Reagan Gan: Thought his name was Wigan. Very friendly and socaible. Also a Chinese Orchestra maestro. Will be remembered dearly for his quirkiness and talent in making everyone laugh.
Thien: Our brother from across the sea (Sabah/ Sarawak). Signature glasses which were very awesome looking. Quiet and speaks when necessary. Badminton professional.
Yao Hsiang: My banana brother. Referred to as ‘Bakerboy Wong’. The Kobe Bryant of the family or Yao Ming. Has a strong passion for cars and friendly in socialising though not being able to speak Mandarin.
Shi Hao: My first friend and brother made through OLE. Referred to as Foo. Refers to me as King Kong. Knows how to make everyone laugh. Quite sociable and also a badminton professional. Quirky, friendly and an awesome pair with Reagan. Currently in another institute.
Karthik: Our Indian or Punjabi brother. Quiet and friendly in a way, he was always a keen tennis player. Left for another institute already. Not much known of him.
Nicholas: Very friendly and sociable friend. Left for Taylor’s very early. Not much known about him also.
William: Not really acquainted to him. First to leave the family after OLE!
If I forgot anyone, forgive me, my memory can only serve that far.
From there, the family grew bigger. As in REALLY REALLY BIG! New additions were:
Carmen Hong: Fellow Ipoh girl. Very sociable and nice. Has a cute voice. AUP student and Chiow Hung's roommate. Awesome coincidence eh?
Ching Peng: Clementine's younger sister. Communist party leader (joking ar). Mature in thinking and actions. Very sociable, caring and concern over everyone.
Lip Yong: Economics expert from Teluk Intan. Has a Bumblebee Kancil which is now a large Benz. Sociable and friendly with quirky jokes. Never sad, always happy so there's never a dull moment with him. Will always go for dinner together. Leaving for America soon. Will be dearly missed. Photoshop expert and a voyager who discovers for new places and new food outlets.
Alex Lam: Lip Yong's junior. Super hyperactive and happy. Very friendly and sociable guy with cute and hilarious antics. Might get out of hand some times but that is what makes him unique. Also a photoshop expert. First one with a car and now drives a Myvi. Is a very curious person about business and shares. Will learn a lot because of curiousity.
Chuen Shien: Known as Yeoh. Not really attached but does hang out sometimes. Is a very bust Stact club committee member. Very loyal and helpful to me. Without him, F' Night wouldn't have happened.
Yew Meng: Good friend of, Yeoh. Good sense of humour but is usually very quiet.
Etara: Love consultant of sorts. King of parkour and sound system master. A good listener who shows a lot concern over everyone. A expert on Thai culture.
Viknesh: We all call him Viki. The super funny man of the entire group. If you can't laugh because of him, then you're either dull or you're Simon Cowell. He will always know how to cheer you up with his signature, friendly fire on funny sounds. A friend you would always want to have as he will be concerned everytime.
Steffi Caroline: MUMMY!! Very kind, gentle and friendly. Shows a lot of concern and has a lot of advise to help keep one moving forward.
I will always remember how Jonathan advised me on the conduct of being a leader of the group. Assertiveness was a priority but never autocracy. My biggest challenge was getting Carmen Lee and Chiow Hung to socialise. It was as difficult as pulling down a tree. True, there are some rough spots in through the entire OLE process but it was the finer and happier memories that I'll always remember.
“Relationships are made in OLE” Those were the words that Jonathan told me. I didn’t know he meant it literally. After chasing the girl I had developed feeling for for a month, she finally noticed me and accepted. Mind you, the road to having a relationship and loving a person is a long, painful but well worth journey.
Eating out was the hardest because it was difficult to find a table large enough to accommodate everyone. I will always remember the amount of table we needed to combine together and the larger amount of chatter and discussion which would occur while waiting for the food to arrive (most effective at Bondi because the food would always come very late). I remember how we would eat until 9 pm, about an hour and a half after we started our dinner. It didn’t matter how long we would spend eating. What mattered was that we all had a great time.
Remember the times when we had barbecues? Goodness gracious, how last minute they were and though there were always have problems, the overall outcome was fun. The first barbecue event was Wan Yee's birthday if I'm not mistaken. Jonathan was seriously a good planner. Yao Hsiang was our transporter with his reliable Kancil, going here and there to get the supplies. I remembered how everyone contributed to the event. Balloon blowing and tying. Food preparation and my personal favourite, the cake. By the time the birthday girl arrived to blow out the candles, well, the candles were part of the cake. Next time, please walk faster. Ha! Ha!
I will also remember all the other birthdays that followed. From celebrating Carmen Hong's birthday through her room window, to the August babies barbecue. All these little events were part of what made the Confucius family who we were. I will always remember my birthday being the most memorable. Imagine celebrating a birthday in a karaoke lounge with spaghetti. It was so unique that it will be one of the best birthdays I will ever had. Many may think why not a barbecue or something big. Well, to me, it's the smallest event but with the biggest thoughts that count. And I will always remember all my brothers and sisters who planned it.
Remember the cybercafe? The favourite hang out for the the guys who just want to shoot zombies or just race with one another. Also noted is the sofa set in the cybercafe which was prized by couples especially 2 of them in the family (ahem! ahem!). That was the first time we laughed at Viki's friendly fire on and exposed ourselves to super loud barbaric DOTA gamers. Some of us joined the screaming session too due to the excitement of the game. Not going to say who though. Skilpool was a place I would also remember as it was there where Jonathan taught me how to play pool. Took a while to learn but hey, at least I now know how to hold a pool cue.....I think.
The pool party on January 20th, 2010 was one of the most controversial moments. The girl I loved never noticed me and I was ready to just forget about it and move on. The girl was quiet and would not look at me except with the "You owe me money look." If it weren't for Jonathan, I would probably still be single today. That was the first day I found out about her true feelings. The happy side of the pool party also involved getting everyone to get into the pool with their clothes on. That included the girls who after much "persuasion", decided to join in the festivities. It was a joyous occasion which will always remind me of the moment I understood what sacrifice, love and care really was.
Going to MidValley was also a great experience. Hanging out and catching movies. That was a really good way to release stress. Remember the chocolate exhibition for those who went? For those who spent money on expensive chocolates for someone you love, kudos. For those who overspent, so sorry to hear that. Remember the bowling session. Yao Hsiang and I will always be the best bowlers. Ha! Ha! Such arrogance must be dealt with severely. All in all, it was the moment spent chatting, eating, hanging out and also the train ride to and fro which gave me a new perspective of things. Sceneries and experiences I have never witnessed before. Later, there were also times which we would go to Times Square in a white colour Myvi with a WTF license plate, driven by a person who is so safe on the road, my beard grew an inch longer by the time we got to the destination.
Every weekend also marked a time when we would go swimming. Most of the time, it turned out to be a talking session rather than a swimming one. It didn’t matter how much we swam. What mattered was that we were all there in the pool. It was how many laps our mouths could chat. At the end of the session, it was always customary to set the dinner time which was quite convenient though nobody really swam enough to burn off the right amount of calories.
Remember hanging out at mummy’s house in Desa Palma? Playing cards together and getting mummy to dress up like a ghost to scare the crap out of me. Epic fail though but it was a fun thing. Remember the discussions, chatter and crap we shared with one another.
Sending Jonathan off to America was the saddest moment of all. But it marked a new beginning for him. It was quite sad to reach there too late but the final phone call before he left reminded me that he will be in our hearts forever. I will always remember him as my brother who proved to the world that I have a heart and that I cared and that I could love. I will remember him as my brother who has shown me a new side of life and bestowing upon me new experiences.
There are also numerous other events and moment which would always put a smile across my face. But to list it here would probably put you all to sleep. I just hope we will all get to remember them someday.
The reason I am recapping back all of this events is in hope that you all remember them too. As time passed since the departure of Jonathan, many changes have occurred. You have new obligations and work to do. You meet new friends along the way and maybe you may find them more fun to be around with. It is quite ok to do so. It is ok to do so as everybody needs a bit of flavour in their lives. New tasks and activities and also new people to socialise with. But it hurts my heart that I have failed at my duty to keep the family together.
My task was never to call for dinner and all of that. It was insignificant. I have realised that my task was to remind everyone of the importance of togetherness, of where we came from, of our very first friends. In the fog of it all, I have failed to remind you all of why we should stand together and of all the great adventures we have had rather than just calling for a dinner. The strength of the family is moulded and bonded through thoughts, love and care. Not because of one person’s call for dinner. Anyone in the family can call for a dinner as there is no rule which states that who calls for dinner.
In the quest to uncover the truth, I have stepped back from calling for dinner to see what happens and in the quest to do so, I have lost everything. There is a saying that it takes two hands to clap. If one party contributes and the other doesn’t, there is no use at all. It hurts my heart that the reality is that if one person doesn’t call for dinner everyone else in the family will abandon each other for newer friends who would obviously be more fun to be around with. I am not saying it is wrong to hang out with other people but do remember the roots of the family. Please remember. I know now that no matter how much I ask you all to remember, my cries are futile and meaningless.
I have also received news that some have assumed that the reason why I don’t call for dinner is because I am busy. This just goes to show that nobody knows the characteristics of those in the family. Ask yourself this. No matter how busy I am, no matter what I have to do, I will always make it for dinner; it’ll only be a bit late or rescheduled. So please drop the accusations that because I am busy I don’t call for dinner thus jeopardizing the family connection. I was so heartbroken when I heard that. I may be a person who is hot tempered and emotional but I have never held grudges against anyone especially inside the family. For the past 2 weeks I was so heartbroken. I loved everyone in this family the same and this is what I get in return, a stab into the back.
All I can do now, regrettably, is the move I thought I would never have to make. To step down from the Confucius family. I will never find a replacement for this family and that is why I will usually go for dinner alone. I am happy that you all have found your new group of friends to hang out with. I am happy that you all have underwent happier changes in your life. I am happy that you all were able to let go so easily when a dumb person like me can’t. All I ask is two favours before I officially step down.
1. Please always remember the good memories of this family and love one another at all times. Remember the happy and great moments.
2. To have one last meal with me as a family (date confirmed later) and I promise you an old coot like me will never disturb you all again.
To end this, I have compiled some photos which I hope would remind you all of the happier moments of this family, before we lost everything.
Do you remember?
Official Confucius family picture.
On tour of INTI during OLE January 2010
When INTI-IU was still INTI-UC. How long was that?
OI!!! Wrong toilet!!!
Boys, get your cameras ready!!
How to play a nice relaxing sport of: Snooker? Stand there and look at the colourful balls
Now that’s what I call a pool party
Wan Yee’s Birthday
Where Foo began^^
Remember what these bracelets meant? Please tell me you do
Is this brotherly love?
Or is this more accurate? XD
Shi Hao: Alamak! I’m falling. I’ll pull you all down.
Everyone else: No worries!! Hold on!! You aren’t heavy. You’re our brother.
Brothers 4 Life!!
Hanging out in Mid-Valley
Lip Yong and Alex’s big event
Kudos to Jonathan for finding the cheapest ice-cream in an airport. Tax free I guess^^
Taken with Lipton’s 300mm zoom lens set to paparazzi mode
Poking at expensive airport food. Thanks Jon^^
Putrajaya Trip 2010
Bye-bye Jonathan. Not seen in the picture because he was already on the plane. Jonathan’s mum next to Wan Yee.
Early morning breakfast. Spaghetti eh?
Our version of ‘Smoky Joes’. It’s called ‘Smoky Yong’
Celebrating the August babies
With tears that fill my eyes, I would like to thank all of you, Jonathan, Chiow Hung, Wan Yee, Clementine, Ching Peng, Lip Yong, Alex and the entire Confucius family for showing me what it felt like to have love for a family other than my own. I see you all as my family and for all the great moments you all have contributed, I thank you for it. Thank you for taking care of me and caring for me like I was a part of the family. I may not be the most essential but you all have made me felt great.
I wish you all the best in all your future undertakings as well as your progress in life. It’s ok if you see me as a cruel and gutless human. I will never accuse you all. Take good care of yourselves and each other. I am just so sorry I could not be a better person. I will always pray for your success and health. God bless all of you.
PS: I’m sorry if this long story has bored you.