Therese Heng · 73 ·

VIVISTOP Honolulu came up with a brilliant idea to gather all the different members of VIVISTOPS around the world to meet with one another, because well, we haven’t really done that before. Especially during this time where all of us have to be at home, it was a great initiative to get everyone together since now technically, we all exist in the same place — online! It was a pretty big feat to pull off but but we managed to do it with almost 68 members at one point of time joining us from all parts of the world. How amazing! Everyone joined in at different time zones too, so we were all having different meals, with members sharing with each other their time zone. First time meeting one another, mind you. But everyone making fast friends already! 🙂

Although we spent quite a fair amount of time introducing one another (there were alot of people to go through), every member was patient and listened intently whenever it was someone’s turn to hello. Members who were finally called upon would exclaim “Finally! My turn!” because they were so excited to have a go at sharing about themselves. This kind of confidence is great to see. Part of the introduction was to share your hobbies and food you were eating, and we were exposed to a wide array of new cuisines and foreign words. Think spam musubi (rice, fried spam and dried seaweed), Bilo-Bilo (Filipino dessert made of small glutinous balls in coconut milk and sugar), and Merienda, which is essentially a European word for a light snack!

Seiya from VIVISTOP Honolulu initially wanted us to do a joint activity, but the introduction was too fun so that took up most of the call so he decided to ask a few questions so we could better plan the next call. He wanted suggestions for what we could do when we meet online again next time and boy, did everyone offer their take on what we could try. People were raising hands and waiting to be called, eager to give their feedback on what to do next. Some suggested:

  • Show & Tell of Pets
  • Graffiti Tutorial
  • Charades
  • Breakdance
  • Planking (although to be honest, I think they meant “blinking”. Like let’s see who blinks first haha)
  • Live drawing session
  • Talent Show

The ideas just kept coming and coming. One of our members even boldly suggested a “Hide & Seek” session, much to the uncertainty of other members who started unmuting themselves to ask how it would work. Ha ha our member was so exasperated after awhile he said “Hey, its just a suggestion, guys!” Haha great effort, bud! Let’s try it out anyway. Who knows, it might be fun!

It just so happened to also be Keiko’s (VIVISTOP Honolulu) birthday so we decided to collectively sing her a birthday song! It’s so nice that despite everything, we can still gather together to celebrate someone! Nothing like spreading a bit of birthday cheer and good vibes all around, eh!

This was all in all a really great session, and provided much comic relief for a Saturday afternoon in (for everyone of us!). It was really nice to see everyone together and just having a ball of a time, brainstorming ideas, sharing about each other’s culture — regardless of language barrier or time and distance.

Let’s continue to stay connected! 🙂 Till then!