A Random Reunion Deserving More Than Just a Footnote

If there is one thing I am very proud of in regard to my previous two jobs, it must be the fact that I left them withdare I become a show off just this oncequite a good impression. I still talk to my ex-colleagues sometimes, albeit not on a daily basis. And while I haven't had the chance to pass by the building of the first company I worked in, I can still proudly claim, "I used to work with these people. The boss is one of the kindest people I have ever met."


Mr. T is one of the oldest people I know. He is an 81-year-old man who marks his birthday on a different date every year, using a Chinese calendar to determine when to celebrate. I used to secretly refer to him as a grandpa-in-disguise because while he was once the boss to whom I prepared a daily financial report, he acted like a grandfather I had never had the chance to meet as a grown-up.

Fun fact: he likes to do karaoke. As someone much older, I expect him to do a message broadcast about various questionable healthy facts and myths with the sentence 'forwarded many times' labeling the videos, but Mr. T also likes to record the television while he sings and later sends it to his contacts. I am still amongst one of the recipients, along with some ex-employees of his who are still in touch with him.

However, it has been quite a while since the last time we heard him sing. It turns out that he has just undergone a laparoscopic surgery recently, followed by a strict warning from the doctor to steer clear of both sweet and oily food. Answering his request post-recovery, I went to visit him today with my sister.

Fun fact: I was nervous. I was afraid that the situation would be too awkward given that it had been years since I last met my previous employers face-to-face (Mr. T and his family ran the company together). It didn't help either, the fact that I felt so little and oh-so-unimportant compared to them. But eventually, I chose to disregard the sentiment and treated it like a bandage that should be gotten over quickly since actually ripping it off was far less fearful than the moments spent to anticipate.

It turned out to be a good tactic. Upon ringing the bell, a friendly maid opened the door and I fearlessly walked in. My sister and I were ushered to have a seat on a wide-open terrace with two cups of tea and snacks. We were welcomed by Mr. T's first son (my ex-boss), Mr. T's wife (I don't think I should call her a grandma-in-disguiseshe looks way too young for her age), and at last Mr. T himself. After a short chit chat, we were soon joined by the first son's wife (also my ex-boss), and I eventually forgot my initial introverted fear.

We talked for about two hours before I went home with a pack of stuffed crab, cheesy opak crackers, almond slices, and a souvenir from their recent trip. While there happened to be a moment or two of understandable silence, I would say that the whole conversation went great overall. Mr. T's family is the definition of picture perfect, cups of hot sweet tea during winter, and perhaps an ideal choice for a holiday card contest. All of them treat me like a long-lost friend and an equal, not like an employee to the bosses or, worse, a kid to the grown-ups.

Fun fact: I am genuinely happy that I did this. It has been a great reminder that while people come and go, some are destined to stay even if not as something constant. I may only be a footnote in their life, but they will be these lengthy paragraphs to me. If one day I will be lucky enough to start my own family, I sincerely hope that mine will be as warm and kind as theirs.