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Monday, December 17, 2007

Hey Dad, Isn’t This Where You Grew Up…?

My dad was English educated. He went to this colonial school in the Straits Settlements. He rarely speaks of his halcyon school days in the late 40’s, but I remember once he told me that he had a teacher called Schumacher, whom the kids called "Shoe-maker" and he had a classmate called Happy Chong.

He also told of the Japanese raids and his elder sister, my auntie, carried him piggy back into the jungle. He was the youngest of four, and he was the fortunate one to finish school and had the ultimate luxury to go to college. After that, he went to work with the government, until the very last day when he retired some years back.

Apparently, my dad was the favourite of my grandma, in as much as emotion Chinese folks from that generation ever showed (read: not much).

His best friend growing up was a distant cousin of his who lived nearby from him. But you know, it strange that even though the two of them speak occasionally, I hardly know his 2 sons, who are roughly the same age as me. Heck, I’ve probably seen them only once in my whole life.

My dad also told me that one of the highlights of his primary school years was a field trip to the F&N’s factory in town. Every kid got a free bottle of soft drink that. He said to get it was like getting a lot of money, soft drinks were a luxury reserved for the rich.

These days my dad spends a lot of time sleeping. Probably to make up for those years he lacked it by working. He can’t make it through a TV program that starts after 9pm.

1 Comments:

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