A letter

Dear Ah Le (Cousin)

How have you been? It has been years since we talked and I kind of missed you. Life has been busy for me such as settling stuff required me to complete before ORD and well as Uni application. I got so busy that I have forgotten about you until recently. Do you miss my brother and me?

Do you still remember when we were young, we were very close? Every school holiday, my brother and I would go back to Malaysia and you would always be there to give us your warmest welcome. We would always look forward to see you. You let us experienced life in kampung could be that fun. A place for us to relax, away from the bustling Singapore.

You introduced to us that besides computing games, physical activities and kampung games could be that fun. Thanks to you, we got to play a game of marbles (goli), participated in bicycle races with kampung neighbors, disturbed neighbors' dogs, getting chased by wild dogs, saved tadpoles from drying puddles of water, crossed our self-made bridge that we almost fell into the huge drain, and taught us how to skip stones. These are few of the many unforgettable experiences you gave us.

Although you are younger than me and mischievous, you were more loyal and mature in many ways. Do you still remember there was one incident when we were throwing rocks and see how far we could throw. There was an instant when I decided to throw the rock to our left, I didn't know what I was thinking. There parked a lorry owned by our uncle. Unfortunately, the rock that I threw, smashed the wing mirror of the lorry.

I was dumbstruck. So were you and my brother. We quickly removed the evidence and tossed the broken pieces of mirror as far as possible. I, being the usual good boy in the eyes of the adults, was afraid. You braved yourself and volunteered to pretend to be the one who destroyed the mirror. You assured me that it was fine as you were famous for being mischievous and they would believe was you who did it. I agreed without thinking of the trouble I caused you as I was afraid of the consequences.

When everyone questioned us who broke the mirror, the 3 of us kept quiet. We tried to pretend we didn't know such an incident happened. Hours later, I overheard what happened. They suspected it might you as you were usually playful. They caned you very badly. You bit your lips and bared with the pain. They increased intensity of the whipping before your tongue let loosed and revealed the truth. I felt so bad afterwards.

I can't remember if I apologized to you, but from then on, I learned what I loyalty. We continued to be close for the next few years before you drifted from us.

You became closer to your friends, started smoking and eventually dropped out of school. Uncle and Aunty were furious. They sent you to Johor Bahru to work to kick the bad habits but you drove your employer's vehicle without a license. Back then, we reduced to only see each other once a year during CNY. After your driving incident at JB, they sent you to Sarawak. Since then, I haven't seen you for years.

Although I know the possibility of you reading this letter is very low, I hope you have mended your ways and fate will allow us to meet again. Thank you for everything and I want you to know that everyone misses you.

Hao Jie
Your Cousin


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