Visitors from the west.

Bernard is a cousin who lives in Perth. He’s a talented architect and I’d always recalled his wonderful talent in drawing. Earlier last week, he sent Alex and I a message to say he’d be in Melbourne for a few days later in the week. He asked if we could catch up.

We organised our usual Friday night dinner at a local joint (Enrik’s) but this time, with very different companions. Alex and Li Har, Bernard, Tress and I had dinner and it was a wonderful time of catching up. We chatted about our work, families and of course, the common bond amongst all of us that night, the Klang Chinese Methodist Church (“KCMC”).

The next day was unusually warm and sunny so after the usual morning routines of coffee and toasts, walking the younger fella, and grocery shopping, Tress and I busied ourselves by cleaning up the outdoors. The lawns hadn’t been looked after through winter so I trimmed the overgrown edges and flowerbeds and mowed and tidied up the place, getting them ready for some TLC over the coming warmer months. I also swept up the mess of tiny leaves that had built up in the driveway and pavements. The day was so beautiful that I found myself looking for things to do outside. Tress did too – and did a load of laundry of miscellaneous items. The sheets over the couches and the doggies’ beds and blankets felt and smelt so clean fresh.

Early Sunday morning, we did our usual things before Tress drove to Syndal station. Her cousin’s son (Seong Yi) and his wife (Yee Sin) were in town for the latter’s business here in Melbourne and SY had messaged Tress a couple of weeks prior, to catch up. They had been to several cities in Australia and Melbourne was to be their last stop before they returned to Malaysia. Tress picked them up from the station and brought them home, before all of us headed to St Alf’s. The auditorium in St Alf’s is a lot smaller than the KCMC hall so maybe (hopefully) our guests felt a bit warmer and cosier. Yes, they too are KCMC members. After the service, they chatted briefly with a couple of people before we took them for a pub lunch at the Blackburn Hotel. We continued chatting about family, work and KCMC. We also chatted about SY’s granddad’s old house in Ipoh – where Tress and I visited many years ago and swam in a river nearby. That’s all gone now, with heavy development polluting the river and housing estates popped up.

Later that arvo, having dropped our guests at Glen Waverly station, I did the usual weekend cook. It had remained warm and sunny so Tress took the little fella for an extended walk and I joined them later.

The next few weekends would be peppered with weddings etc. I guess the current run of catching up with families and friends would go on for a bit yet. I’m grateful for that.