Thursday, September 2, 2010

usa 2010: polka-ing with the hawkins

one of the reasons why we keep going back to virginia is to keep in touch with the lovely friends we have back there. a couple of them make so much effort for us, its really the least we could do. one of the most precious friendships i've kept since my usa days, is this older couple, john and maribel hawkins.

we used to work together on events. more specifically, they used to work as event attendants in my department as hourly staff. when we had baskets to make, ribbons to tie, events to run, babysitting or airport meet & greets, i had a list of part-time hire who were on-call and these were my most dependable folks. they are really lovely people, my event attendants. i remember one christmas, being a single girl, had not much reason to rush back on a dark snowy night. so i stayed late in the office to clear up some backlog of work. in the dark of the night, i hear these shuffling of footsteps and a special delivery of warm treats and milk. it really made me tear up. for those two years, they were my family.

due to their health, there was no way they were able to make it to australia so we came to them instead. and took the chance to take a few photographs of the cosy home they live in. its not on a sprawling huge piece of property but every inch of this house is filled with little special somethings. every item has a story. i love listening to each of them, every if they are repeated a million times. :)  sometimes, i wished i had the same relationship with my grandparents.

beautiful china and silverware. i love how it becomes part of the room...

we wined and dined like royalty with their best china. maribel makes the BEST dinners.. daniel had thirds!!

little birdhouses in the backyard.. sometimes, the deers visit a night.

one day, i wanna retire in a home filled with our life's treasures...

john's not very fond of pictures... right before daniel took his picture, he asked if it was ok to hold maribel's hands. awww..

their love for each other inspires me. once i had john and me working on a bus tour where i allocated him 1 hour to lunch, while i took over. when we exchanged places, he was in high spirits so i asked him why so. his response, half skippingly "my cupcake is coming to have lunch with me in the employee cafeteria. what is there not to be excited about." i told myself one day, i'll find a man who will still call me "a cupcake" when im 70 and would still wear a genuine smile like he did at the thought of sharing a dry sandwich with me! :)

in the mail, together with our RSVP cards, we received a little gift from the Hawkins, a hand-embroidered bridal hankie. too delicate and precious to use but i wrapped it around my bouquet for good luck. and a lovely note to remind us "Be a good listener. Never go to sleep unhappy with each other. Do A LOT of things together. Love each other lots." 

what wise words! :) oh i miss them so much right now.


  1. such a sweet couple!!
    here's blessing you that D will call you a 'cupcake' when you are 70! :)

  2. Thanks for sharing this Zhing... It's heartening and heartwarming to know that life can be simple and filled with so much love, and not just about the bad news, infidelity etc that we read in newspapers, tabloids every other day. They sound like beautiful folks... Were you working in Virginia back then or something? After college? You haves lived in many places!! :D

  3. And I want a home like that - doesn't have to be swanky, expensive but everything has to be there for a reason- whether it was a joint decision, bad decision (even those TWO damn poang chairs sitting in our living room masquerading as comfortable armchairs, which W bought without letting me know as they were on mega sale! But he actually came home grinning from ear to ear with the "money he saved us on the chairs" so I let it go haha) or fond memories.... Your friends have an amazing house, something money can never buy.

  4. Right after college (uni as they call it in singapore), I headed to Switzerland for post grad and got hired out of Switz to USA, Virginia right after! I stayed for about 2 years and came back home! :)
    The Hawkins home was truly a home. Left both of us dying in envy.. Maybe its age, I'm starting to appreciate that a little more now. When i was younger I wanted those new age, black-only painfully chic loft spaces featured in magazines. Even if the bank account allows for that, I doubt we'd go that direction now.
    hahahaha... i love that story!! i can image you and your poang chairs making it to 80! :) I'm sure that's a piece you'll keep for life! At least it puts a smile on your face! :)
    Golly.... i really ache for our own little home right now.. :)

  5. *fingers crossed* too!!! :) thanks babe!!!

  6. Awww... Now that is a story we don't hear everyday. :) I wanna grow old like that too!
    PS: D and you will have so many stories to tell your grandkids next time!! :)

  7. hahaha!!! we'll get past dealing with the idea of having kids first before we have the "grandkids" conversation! :) hahah!!! :) :) :)
    aren't they super sweet. they're our role models. as cheesy as the concept is! :)

  8. awww...
    this post made me tear up a little. their love is so precious :)

  9. Re: awww...
    i've been hmming and ahhing over this for a while cos it seems a little cheesy and corny. but glad i did then! :)
    they would be pleased to know!!

  10. I really love this post babe. Let's hope your relationship and mine will turn out to be as wonderful as this lovely couple's.

  11. yes yes!!! praying really hard i'll look back 70 years later and say "we made it!" :)

  12. thanks for posting this! such a a sweet journal entry!


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