Last week, out of the blue, my friend called to tell me that our Chemistry lecturer is in town to teach at NUS for three months until November. Dr Phillip Marriot left NUS to return to Australia in the middle of my fourth year at NUS. He had taught me all four years and being an Ozzie, his laid back and friendly nature made him very popular with students, not to mention that he is quite good looking too. (Unfortunately, he’s married to a Malaysian Chinese and have two kids already then.)
He had asked my friend, who had kept in contact with him all these years, to help contact his ex-students to meet up, and hence she called me, as my class was his last batch of students.
It’s been 20 years since I’ve graduated and my honours class, though small with only 20+ students, were not close. I have only kept in close contact with Elina, and that’s because we were part of the same expedition team who climbed Mt Kinabalu in 1986. I have met some of the other classmates in my job selling Chemicals on and off, but it’s been ten years since I’ve retired. Many of the chemical companies have merged, sold off, or like ICI, simply closed down. There’s no way I can find my classmates, especially when I can’t even recall their full names.
Once at SRC @ NUS, while waiting for Aaron for his swimming class, a classmate approached me. He had told me that some of the Malaysian classmates still meet up during CNY and invited me to join them. I had declined, as all the names he mentioned did not sound familiar.
I contacted Elina, hoping she would have some contacts with those who were on teaching scholarships with her then, but she too could not provide any contact.
So regretabbly, I had to tell my friend that we won’t be having a reunion with Dr Marriot, unless someone else organises it and calls me. I don’t expect Dr Marriott to remember me either.
With Dr Marriott just before his departure in 1987.