Lezard in my tea cup

This is the front and back of my book, Echo of Leaves. It was a collaboration with a fantastic henna artist and friend, Lezard Cheung and Ong Wan Shu, a photographer. Producing it was certainly not easy, but it was really thrilling to watch the whole project fall into place, through the immense effort of Lezard, who designed all the pages and layout.

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It is strange how people start to drift apart over the years. I remember meeting Lezard for the first time as if it was yesterday. We were at a gay pub, and Lezard was on stage, singing so beautifully I was tearing. I had gone to Niche to support my staff, Desmond in his drag art, but instead of watching Desmond, I found myself looking at Lezard instead. He has a power stage presence, with piercing eyes and a voice so full of character... and sorrow that anyone watching would be rooted to the spot. He ran in to change his costume, but his butterfly clip was caught in his hair. He probably didn’t remember this, but Lezard, dressed as Anita Mui, asked me to help him get his butterfly clip out of his hair. It was one moment that I thought desperately, perhaps he is just performing, and in character. Perhaps he is into girls?

Being a little more forward, we spoke and I asked him out for dinner. He told me point blank that it will be great being friends, but he is definitely not looking for a girl. Getting to know him, I found he is incredibly talented, very organized, very gifted in every art related component, and for the first time, I probably admired him more than I had admired anyone else till then, as a person, as a role model. His persona being very loud and brash on stage, I had initially thought that perhaps he would be the same real life. Was amazed over and over by him, for he is intelligent, witty and well read. Everything I was looking for in a guy... except he wasn’t into me. Many dinners later, we grew closer and were able to become confidantes.

We went to Bangkok together with a few friends, and my, did the blinkers fall off my eyes. I yielded myself to another time and world. Bangkok was so different, so vibrant, and there, I met God. Not God in heaven, but God, a Thai singer and escort. But that is another story, for another time...

Now Lezard and I are no longer as close, but I still think of the times we shared very fondly.

I wish the clock can be turned, and I would have done things very differently and kept in touch a lot more. In life, we meet so many wonderful people... I am glad to have met Lezard, who helped me grow up and see the world differently.

This is Lezard...



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