E had a best friend from elementary school, a fresh-off-the-boat Chinese boy called Jia. Jia moved towns and they lost touch for 10 years before finding each other on the Internet. Jia planned a trip to Tokyo and it became a group of 6 people travelling together, and one of the girls Elaine who ended up joining turned out to be his neighbour from across the street whom he had met once before. We all caught up in Tokyo last year and Elaine and I became fast friends because she is a strong Christian who was then a graphic designer and now works for an NGO, and her parents are Singaporeans who migrated to Melbourne when she was 1.
This trip to Singapore she brought along Daz, also of Singaporean parentage but raised in Melbourne. He did the same course as E is doing now in Monash. It took me a while to realize the reason why I found him so familiar was because he reminded me of Peter (in a good way)... Extremely generous and easy to talk to, I'm glad him and Elaine found each other. :)
Lina and Mark I met in Melbourne, through E's little bro Conrad. Lina is from Sweden but had been working in Ireland for a few years where she met Mark, and they are on a round-the-world trip. They ended up staying about 5 months in Melbourne. Conrad invited E and I for drinks with him and his friends at an Irish pub one night, and I found out they were stopping by Singapore so I offered to take them out. They are the nicest people ever, game to try anything and I was especially impressed with how Lina knew her teh-si from her tea-o.