Wednesday, November 19, 2008

surprise! surprise! surprise!

the birthday cake -from secret recipe - was supposed to be part of the surprise

the traditional chinese birthday buns

with my siblings - four of my sisters with their children and grandchild

my family with ian, his grandma and brother and my brother's family

my balestier colleagues kwan, tye thong, sng thai soon and gee peng with my 4th sister's family and my youngest sister lynn.

lay bee's small group members( sabrina, james, choi chin and stella) , nah, victor, helen, mdm ow and mr and mrs soon boon eng.

my former students from balestier hill technical school and now my monthly walking kakis



it was supposed to be a night of surprises.

the first surprise actually came earlier in the day. when i went to the airport to meet ida, my younger girl, who was returning from melbourne immediately after she had sat for the last paper so that she could be in time to celebrate my birthday, i was pleasantly surprised to see ivy, my elder girl and her boyfriend ian at the arrival lounge. they were not supposed to be in singapore till january 2009. which meant they had spent $1200 each (on airfare) so that they could be here for a few days to join in the bash.

the second surprise was presence of ian's grandmother and brother at the dinner. they flew here from kuching and stayed at the royal park on scott.

the next surprise was seeing my siblings and their children at the birthday dinner. my siblings took up nearly three tables.

then more surprises awaited me. my friends and former colleagues were also there. so were the members of lay bee's farrer park small group. laybee's former principal ms ow was also at the dinner.

to round up the surprises was seeing my former students from balestier and now my monthly walking kakis occupying one table.

however, there were a number of tell-tale signs which dull these surprises. first, the business card of the restaurant was left lying around after a call was made to it. then i stumbled upon a guest list which puzzled me - it included the names of ivy, ian, his grandmother and brother. prior to my birthday, i received messages from more than the usual number of well-wishers.

surprise or no surprise, it was a wonderful gathering of old friends, colleagues, students and kins.

21 comments:

Andy said...

happy belated yg ~!

yg said...

thks, andy

Victor said...

YG, you got invite me meh? (I saw my name in one of the photos.) :)

So many photos but how come no photo of the birthday boy? 60-year-old still so shy ah?

Anyway I can imagine that you look like your sisters.

yg said...

victor, if you study the group photos, the one that appears in every group is me.

fr said...

Best wishes to you!

yg said...

thks, fr.

nah said...

Now you are a confirmed senior citizen. From now on, whenever you board a bus or the train, it's no more 'tih' with your ezlink card but 'tih tih'.

Shamini said...

Happy Birthday Mr Ong! My dad turned 60 in October. Didnt realise the two of you were of the same age!BTW, I religiously read yr blog all the way from Australia

Shamini said...

Oh yea. Wondering if you have heard this song. I think of my dad when I hear this song. And I know you love your daughters a lot.

http://au.youtube.com/watch?v=BUk5SZ18WhY

The song is by Steven Chapman and I think it was written for his eldest daughter. After this song was released, His youngest adopted daughter was run over accidentally by his older son. Really sad but they embraced GOd to lead them through the difficult period. The song also happens to hugely popular at weddings for the bride's dance with her dad...

yg said...

hello shamini, i met up with you friend kavi just before deepavali to pass her some home-made murukku. she was telling me you would be back in dec and that you may end up taeching in a sec sch, maybe, bishan park sec?

nice song. i have visited u-tube to listen to it. thks.

Icemoon said...

How come yg doesn't smile in the photos?

yg said...

icemoon, when you don't have many pearly whites, it is difficult to open wide.

Seen This Scene That said...

Happy belated birthday!

yg said...

thks, seenthisscenethat.

Lam Chun See said...

Hope not too late to wish you Happy Birthday unker. I just got back from a kelong trip mah.

Anway Victor. Our shy birthday boy everytime dare not put up his own photos but only those of his 'kakis'. But then Uncle Dicko 'exposed' him in one of his articles and so now he has no choice but to 'go public'.

BTW, my brother-in-law also celebrating his 60th birthday next week. Which school did you go to? You just might know each other .. Spore is a very small place you know. (I forgot which school he went to)

yg said...

thanks, chun see. anyway, we have been celebrating 6oth birthdays this whole year.

i went to the same school as peter.

you went to a kelong or a fish-farm? nowadays, most of those around s'pore are farms rather than kelongs.

Lam Chun See said...

I went to a proper kelong near Sibu Island in Malaysia..

PChew said...

Hi yg, Happy Belated Birthday!

philip

yg said...

thks, mr chew.
we need you to throw some light on the hotel at ponggol. peter remembers it as a motel. do you have any idea where this hotel was? what about the hotel at pasir ris? was it around when you all held your picnic there?

Shamini said...

Mr Ong
Yesh, I'm comin back in late dec and sadly my first intial posting to Montfort Seconday was cancelled and the letter provided no reason whatsoever. I had to call and ask personally and it seems there is an urgent need for history tcher at North Vista. I'm worried cos its all the way in Sengkang and I live in Bishan.. I'm glad its not Bishan PArk. Tho it was my sec sch, I had a terrible relief teaching experience there 9 yrs ago. I remember one boy attempting to throw a paper ball at me but I caught him b4 that!

yg said...

shamini, north vista is actually the former thomson sec sch. i have been to the sch once to visit a friend who used to teach there.
the principal is around my age, so should be due for retirement.