Sunday, May 28, 2006
It has been 4 years. 4 years since i last met all my exchange student frens. yesterday was the 1st time we met up again after so long. n ironically its the 1st time AFS organised a gathering for us returnees. i met lots of ppl. young n old. some went for their xchange even b4 i was born, some jus a few years back n some jus came back. age might have set us apart, makes us look different - graying hair, slouching back; spiky hair, bling blings - but every1 of us there had a fire of enthusiasm in our eyes tat day. we r all connected by 1 fact, by 1 trip, by 1 exchange. we look at each other with knowing eyes; listen wif knowing nods; exchanges stories like we were young all over again.... nothing can beat being an AFSer........ nothing
ppl asked me if i ever regretted going on tat xchange. if i ever regretting putting my studies on hold. o if i ever regretted not taking up all those scholarships that were available for me den; of letting go of all those opportunities. it was never a hard decision. it is as simple as i had always put it. i never doubted - i wan to be on tat plane, i wan to b an AFSer. if i were to be given a chance to go back in time; even if i were to b given god's power to change 1 thing, i wud never never change my decision to go Japan.
all these feelings.... i dun think any1 wud understand. but yesterday, i found a group of ppl, who share the same feelings as i do, the same aspiration as i have, i found life long frens, tat i wud never have made if i was not an AFS returnee.....
we talked alot yesterday. we learn from our chairman (another returnee from NZ a long long time ago) all the relevant histories of AFS, about our organisation, about wat had happen, the changes n our dreams. we discussed on ways to reach out to other returnees, on how to make others have a better experience, on how to spread our joy to others so tat other can experience it themselves... we talked about many many more.
i was asked to give a speech. to talk about how my trip changed me. i wasn't prepared for it. i wasn't told about it b4 hand. but i guess all AFSers have to b prepared for the unexpected - tat much we were taught. my speech was short but i m glad every1 enjoyed it. i enjoy sharing wif others my experience abroad but most important of all, i enjoy sharing wif others, my unique experience as an AFSer, as an exchange student. Its v v different........ n i luv it.