Getting To Know Others At Different Times Of Your Life

In recent times, some of my closest and dearest have befriended acquaintances from my past. People I never even knew would get along now get along like a house on fire! I’ve known them for so many donkey years and somehow they found each other through other means (not with my help) and decided that they liked hanging out together.

Funny thing is that these people knew of each other’s existence from way back but the friendship somehow only managed to blossom when they are much much older (now). 

I just find it interesting and rather peculiar that so very different people can now have so much in common!

Of course people grow up and develop interests only to cross paths with these other people who too grew up to find themselves having something in common with an old stranger from school. I just think it is amazing how everyone links up. Facebook would be so proud.

It just makes you think if the friends you consider your closest now were to exist in your life over ten years ago, meaning the uni mates or colleagues you have now existed back then as primary school mates. Would you still be such great pals?

I too realized that the friends I ‘grew’ up with are friends I usually call “my high school friends”. But truth is, about half of them were from my primary school and I usually forget that we were primary school mates. I was invisible to them and they were too advanced for me (my mum didn’t allow me to go hang out at Pyramid to catch a movie or go ice skating in 1998) so we never really knew each other.

In a way, the only friends I have back home are my high school friends. There are only ever three bunches I see:

1) The Dahlings and the Hunnies

The Dahlings are the bunch of girls from my year who were not all my classmates but we grew close because of Interact and Volleyball which sustained our friendship. We were initially pulled together because of a few like Chien and Sush. Then there was Mel and me. I think form2 was a rather crucial year. 

Chien, Sush, Mun Teng and Li Peng were all in a clique back in primary school where they played tali getah (a famous game among malaysian school girls involving a really long jump rope made out of rubber bands. I made one too, but I had nobody to teach me and play with.) So it was only natural that they stuck together when they entered the same high school. We didn’t talk in primary school but only said hello in high school because the other person was familiar.

Mel and I befriended each other when we were boy crazy form1 librarians stalking morning session boys. I was fond of a particular prefect in his white tight pants and she was busy fending off many suitors from the third form. Over Bliss magazines and the introduction of a world of furry and glittery girly things, Mel and I became best friends and attended Interact meetings together. I introduced her to her first real boyfriend too. (Wave hello, Vern Yang!)

In form2, the dahlings were technically split into only two classes: 2 Budi and 2 Cekap. In 2 Budi, Sush, Mel, Esther, Amanda and V-ng Yan were there. In 2 Cekap, I was there with Chien, Mun Teng, Melissa and Li Peng. These two bunch of girls formed cliques in their own class and because of the existing bonds between some of the girls, the entire bunch gelled together and became one. 

We were not The Dahlings until form3. I know it sounds like a super lame name but it was Amanda who came up with the cheesy name in form3 when she drew a picture of all of us. :) 

Oh, 2 Azam was Abby’s class, but she was the new hot girl in school and it was only towards the end of form2 where she joined us. And as for Min Dee, she was the new girl from Assunta and she only came to our school in form3. She started hanging out with us more in form4, thanks to Chien!

The Hunnies are the bunch of guy friends who were mostly pals of Chien from primary school (Kwo Kuang, Chun Guan, Kevin, Barry, Yijin..) but they also consist of a few from other primary schools such as Nigel, E Guy, Marcus, Adrian and Kay Hong . Come to think of it almost the entire bunch of “hunnies” are from my primary school. Hunnies were formed because they were jealous of the “Leng Chai Gang”. I would say that the “Leng Chai Gang” is a subsidiary of the Hunnies.

“Leng Chai Gang” is a name for the bunch of guys from 4 Omega. They consist of Barry, Adrian, Kay Hong, Kevin and Yijin. Barry is Leng Lui LengChai, Kay Hong is Lala LengChai, Yijin is BabyLengChai, Adrian is NerdLengChai and Kevin is Emo Lengchai. The Leng Chai gang take trips away together where they get wasted in hotel rooms and come home with funny drunken stories. 

The Hunnies were the left over boys from the bunch who were not in the same class back in Form 4 and thus have no special name. So out of spite, they called themselves the Hunnies. Also to mock The Dahlings I think. 

Yeah, long story short, these are the people whom I still hang out with because most of us went to Taylor’s College together. They were my primary school friends, high school friends AND my college friends. Such is life in the education hub of Malaysia = Subang Jaya, where you need not travel far for an education. I bet I could claim to be in the same kindergarten as them if I was born in 1986. 

I’m glad we make it a point to hang out on a very regular basis what with everybody working now. I’m the only student left in the group btw. Oh Chien and Adrian too as they are both doing medicine. LONG COURSES SUCK BALLS. 
 

2) The Interact Seniors/Volleyball Gang. 

Dennis, Joshua and Vern Yang are the ones whom we usually see as compared to the rest of the senior guys we hung out with back in school. (When they graduated from high school, we were like, “We don’t have anymore guy friends.”.

The Dahlings and this bunch of seniors were really close because of the Interact Club and being on the volleyball team. We were still in the Under-15’s girls’ team and they were in the Under-18 boys’ team. Of course other bonds were because a few of them were interested in some of the girls (not me) and some of us were interested in them (HEY JOSH WASSAP). 

Funny, didn’t really hang out much with the senior girls in that year except for a few whom we still see when there is a chance like Evelyn and Rosalyn. 🙂 But here’s a really good example of what I meant by getting along with others at different times of your life. I was quite scared of Rosalyn back in high school coz she was all about tough love but in recent years when we do meet up, the conservation just flows and is filled to the brim with gossips!

I can actually remember my very first ICQ chat with Dennis. That was the first time we spoke. I already knew that he was the popular head prefect from my primary school (I was 9, he was 12). When I added him on ICQ, I was in form1 and he was in form3. I don’t know why I remember the chat also, maybe because I had a penchant to reread my ICQ chat histories back in the day when going online did not involve stalking blogs, updating blogs, selling things, stalking friends on facebook and basically you had a lot more time on your hands when you were online. 

I remember it was something along the lines of getting to know each other. The memory is a little vague but I do remember him telling me that he is a really eccentric character (No shit, KKB*). The 12 year old me nodded wisely and typed back, “You must be really rich then.”

Having not had enough of English classes at 12 years old, I assumed eccentric meant being rich. 

Can’t believe it is also my 10th year of friendship with those guys. All getting ancient this year at 26! 😀

*KKB stands for Korkorbear. Dennis is the leader of the Bear family. Not gonna go into details, too corny. 

3) The Leo Gang/Chee Kiang’s Gang

Being the president of the Leo Club back in high school, Chee Kiang grew close to Daryl and Justin. He was already close to Gaya who was his Form One classmate and Gaya was best friends with Nadine. Justin was my primary school mate so I had already known him for many years, but we never really acknowledged each other in primary school and as for Daryl we got along really well the moment he stepped into my class in Form2 as the new boy with the x-men hair cut. He taught me what cock teaser meant!

Because of ‘things brewing’ between Chee Kiang and myself back in Form3-5, I’d go along when they hung out. I had my first shisha with them in form3 at Pyramid and stayed out till midnight for the first time in Form4 when they celebrated the Leo Club election results, also in Pyramid. I don’t think we’ll ever grow out of Sunway Pyramid. Any Subang kid would tell you that the setting of the beginnings of their social life started with Sunway Pyramid. 

It was also with them when I had my first party with alcohol! This was in Form 4 and I think it was during the World Cup Season in 2002, and the Drunken Daryl Stories (DDS) still lives to this day. Butt slapping, shouting down the road when some random dude cheered from his house at some Turkey goal, puking, Chee Kiang mopping the floor, dancing Dance Dance Revolution on the floor without the mat……. good times, good times. Oh yeah!! It was Chee Kiang’s 16th birthday party and when he blew the candles they asked me to kiss him on the cheek. I declined coz shy.

After high school, people like Jon and Joshua (another Joshua) started hanging out more with the group and now Chee Kiang’s best friends at home include people he hardly talked to back in school. They bonded at different times of their lives.

So yeah. Sorry, I got carried away. These are the few people whom I usually see when I am home. 

What I am trying to say is that my friendships were bonded because of similar wavelengths I shared with these people at a certain point in my life. Today, I am not 12 anymore hoping to make more friends in high school. Um, if you’ve seen my facebook friends list, it’s just people I know.. but it is really difficult to find friends you can sit down and have a long laugh with. Too many of them are just superficial acquaintances. But who knows. Maybe when we are 78, in a nursing home, we’ll talk happily about our grandkids and our unfilial children for putting us in this pathetic home. 

Like my classmates and some of my juniors in dentistry (some, because it’s quite difficult to bond when you’re from different years with different schedules). It’s just great when you meet someone whom you get along so well with. Some people whom you meet on that first day of school and talk damn alot with just because you have so much in common, could very well be almost like strangers to you by the end of the course.

I never knew my closest friend here would be the girl who sat quietly in front of the teacher back in A-levels, whom I wasn’t all that close with back in college. Lie Yuen and I have been classmates for 7 years now and we’re like family. Living together for almost five years already.

Would I have been able to befriend Zhu Zen if I had met her at that Interact Conference in Shah Alam back in 2001? 

Despite the language barrier in the early years, I didn’t think I would be able to connect as much as I wanted with my classmates but now I can laugh along and not wait for someone to translate the mandarin jokes for me. At least most of the time. I can do a fair bit of mandarin now. Some days I can actually carry a conversation in mandarin for quite a bit! 😀

I grew to be comfortable with them and they with me, despite my constant need for translations.

Outside of my circles, aside from Chee Kiang who is my best everything rolled in one, I have two guy friends whom I can tell anything and everything to. Weng Lum and Calvin. Our mutual friends are plenty, but I would go for mutual acquaintances, it is more apt. Nobody would guess that we are actually friends because we simply don’t have enough of mutual friends to form a clique. I can’t possibly leave Soon Seng out if I am to mention guy friends. 🙂 I truly enjoy all our long chats in the car down to any blogger event. You are my bridge between my high school-Subang friends and the blogger friends. Soon Seng and I met at an Interact Club event in 2002 and he was already very friendly to begin with. Definitely someone who can bond with anyone at any point in time of their lives.

Here at uni, my closest guy buddy is definitely Jimmy. We think we are cousins because of the shared surname, oh and the shared religion too – he is also a Soka Gakai member. But I’m thankful for someone with the same twisted sense of humour because I seriously need a good laugh all the time. You know how it is when you’re on the same wavelength, you don’t really have to explain why you think something is funny, you both just snigger snigger/laugh like hyenas. This connection I also share with Brenda. Most of the girls here and I do, but with Brenda, she gets it more. Like her mind is just as dirty as mine. Heehee don’t deny it, babes.

I have always wondered how would it be if I met all these people back in high school. Or in kindergarten for that matter. 

Sometimes, I get a little crazier and even think about what would it be like if I were to travel back in time to be friends with my parents! Would my mum and dad be best friends with me? Can they connect with me? Sometimes it gets even more crazy, I think about being buddies of the same generation with my great grandparents. What would it be like?

Alright, I’m done with the mildly interesting thoughts I had floating around my head for a bit. Time to go back to the books. 
Oh, before I go, just one little bit more: And some friends, you just lose touch with when you grow up. 🙁

Different wavelengths at different times of our lives.