Familiar Stranger

IMG_4882PHOTO: Reuel Eugene Tay (The Streets of Hongdae, Seoul, South Korea)


While sojourning on earth in this short period-of-a-life that we have, have you ever have those moments where you see distinct faces that seem to etch into your mind? Days like this, I walk down a street minding my own business but see a face that seemed to strike a chord in my mind, or leave a deep impression, or so I think. Some may induce deja-vu, [Some are really pretty,] some gives a very homely, familiar feeling as though you have known them for a long time, but as a matter of factly have never met him or her before.

But the queer thing is, these faces never stay in our heads as long as we believe them to, and we forget them soon after.

But life is so interesting. This stranger one cross paths with every now and then – may become a close friend in the future, that stranger over there may become one’s life partner in the future. Who knows what the future beckons?

Friends and Seasons

IMG_5929PHOTO: Reuel Eugene Tay


Had a HTHT (heart-to-heart talk) with a dear friend recently and she was sharing about how she was feeling a little sad about how some friends she was close to are no longer so lately. That set me thinking as well.

How many of us ever wondered how many friends we can make in one lifetime?

I tried googling it to find some statistics that can put a figure to this highly ambiguous subject but surprisingly, none can be found! Well, this is by far too difficult a subject to track even for the leading scientist of our time. There are after all the geographical and psychological differences that separates the countries from the conservative and the lesser, the extroverts from the introverts, and many other variables.

A blogger estimated the number of people the average Joe will meet in his or her lifetime at 100,000.

A comment taken from BBC News Magazine by Leading anthropologist Robin Dunbar who is also the person behind the term Dunbar’s number stated that an average person can maintain a stable, close relationship with 150 people approximately (The range is between 100 to 230).

Assuming that one-third (33,000) would probably be the friends we would have made in our whole life, this list of 150 could and would be changing all the time throughout our lives. Of course that’s not to stay that no one person will stay on that list, it really depends on the individual in question. Dunbar also went on to state that the number of close friends one can have and maintain is between the numbers 6 to 12.

On an unrelated topic, there is no individual who wouldn’t want another person whom he can call friend, since just by me typing friends on Google generated lots of suggestions such as ‘How many friends do you have’ ‘How many friends do you need’, ‘How to make friends’, ‘How to make friends after 30’, etc.

Thank God for friends!

From a non-statistical point of view, I would like to believe that every person goes through something I would like to call ‘seasons’ in his or her life. Much like the four seasons of the earth, the different seasons an individual is in also brings forth different people into his life; some – a familiar face, and some – strangers who are potential-best-friend material.

Friends who do not hold a place in our hearts will naturally fade away, that’s fine. Friends worth keeping will always be in our heart, and us in theirs. Sometimes, through the winds of time it may seem as though they no longer care [about this friendship], but perhaps it is just that they are also going through ‘seasonal changes’ in their life. That closely treasured relationship between the two is not lost, simply out-of-focus at the moment. And regrettably, there are also those lost friends whom we treasured a lot but whose friendship is strained, damaged, weakened due to time and distance, and lost forever.

Though painful, we must accept that this is a natural cycle of life. During Winter, many things disappear – friends who were once close are no longer around for us when we were at our lowest. But it is also during this time when enduring plants such as the beautiful Snowdrops and Camellia emerge – friends whom we never knew existed, friends who were always there for us, who will pick us up when we fall, and satisfy our weary soul. And then comes Spring, when some of these friendships blossom into a beautiful lasting relationship, many whom we will attend their 21st Birthday parties, their wedding matrimony and banquet, baby showers, arrival of grandchildren celebrations, 50th and 60th Birthday celebrations, and one whom we will fall in love and live with – friends who will always have a place in the 150.


P.S. I want to use this space to thank my wonderful boss Yuan Wenling for being more than a friend to me. Thank you for mentoring and caring for me during my time with City News. You may be out of sight but never out of mind. You are really missed. All the best in this new arena your family is placed in!

Best Year Yet!

2011 has been a defining year for me indeed. Pushing barriers, breaking boundaries.

Enrolled into bible school, Went for two mission trips (Malang, Indonesia and Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia), went on a solo backpacking trip to Taipei Taiwan, enlisted into national service, singlehood again, and most importantly forging closer bonds with the people that I love.

[2011] Becoming alil wiser (laughs!), mature, stronger, and coming to the realization that life is actually very simple. Just some booze(or coffee please) and a bunch of close friends, and I’m a happy man. 🙂

Starting my 2012 right by meeting up with all the people close to my heart. Whatever this year has in store for me, come what may, I know I can go through it victorious and triumphant with God, my family and friends by my side. 🙂

School’s out! For good!

Hey all. Today marks the end of my schooling life. I am really thankful for this 3 years and wouldn’t exchange them for anything in the world. But! I won’t want to experience it again. Lol.

I wanna thank all my classmates for their friendships and I also wanna thank all the group members that have worked with me; Thanks for slogging your guts out with me! We have submitted countless projects, slept at 4am (or even later) to complete projects, acted in a number of skits and did countless presentations until I wanna vomit! (Slang)

I truly believe 2011 will be our best year yet. Here’s wishing you the best in your future endeavours and may we meet again as managers and directors of international organizations and conglomerates in the near future!

Now all that’s left is slaying the 4 exam papers.

THANK YOU! (Part 2)

Tons of people to thank! For me, the presence of you guys at the celebration has already blessed me a lot!

I wanna thank

  • My mom for getting the catering for me.
  • My beautiful girlfriend Tong Yan for being there for me,buying me dinner (Bakerzin), writing me a letter and even giving me a red packet!
  • The awesome couple, Wendy Danielle and Peter Hua for helping me do the decor and buying the Guestbook!! Even though I wasn’t very excited to the point of being lethargic about my own party, Wendy called me up in the afternoon and offered to help me decor the place and even get the guestbook for me! Thanks Wendy!
  • Best buddy Jasper and Eunice for the Hugo Boss Cologne!
  • Wendy, Desmond, Felicia, Terry, Peter and Ronald for the CA vouchers!
  • NYP cluster (or ex since everyone has already graduated lol) for coming as well as blessing me with the CA vouchers!
  • My relatives for all the red packets!
  • My ex-members and friends from WR zone (Jeremy, Benji, Samuel, Eliz, Kenneth, Michelle, did I leave out anyone?)for the Authentic LFC kit (including a LFC scarf, LFC jacket, a LFC water bottle and a LFC cap! I thought you guys are gonna throw me into the pool, taupok me or smash a cake in my face! Sorry for wronging you guys! Hahaha!
  • Kit Meng and Belinda for the GV gift card! I will definitely use it!
  • Jeremiah who ran to 3 different places so that he can get me vouchers from 3 places!! (ZARA, Topman and Pedro) Thanks Jeremiah! I am so touched!
  • Choir members and twitter khakis Rubez and Candice for blessing me with a super nice ‘Angel wings’ B’day card and cash! You guys are so generous, I don’t know what to say!
  • Jon Teo for the Starbucks Card! Now I have 2!
  • My cell group for the CA voucher!
  • My cell group members (Janice, Guanlin, Melissa, Elijah) for turning up; Elijah for coming down despite having rugby training earlier!
  • Daniel and Siyi for the giant teddy bear! (My mom kop it for her own lol)
  • Bryna (Cgl) and Hongbin (first cg member) for the cool Billabong wallet!
  • Matt (ex-cg member) for the One Life One Wife shirt (his own brand)!
  • Xue Jun for the Capitaland voucher!
  • Joanna for the T-shirt!
  • Cath and Vonne for the cool T-shirt! Love it!
  • My boss Grace and finance manager Shi Hui for turning up and also blessing me with red packet and RSH voucher!

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All in all, I just wanna say a big THANK YOU for being there on my special day! I am truly blessed by so many great people. Thanks for being my friend. 🙂

Yours Sincerely,
Reuel Eugene

P.S. The value of the gifts whether big or small will not be disclosed for good measure.