(1981 Teachers’ Day with the late 張雪芳老师 and and the late 李元芳老师.)
It all started in Facebook. A long-lost secondary schoolmate, M, contacted me and from there, I re-established friendship with three others.
It’s been thirty years exactly since I’ve graduated from Nanyang in 1981. Unfortunately, I lost contact with most of them from my class. Instead, some of my closest friends from Nanyang are from a different graduating class. Funnily enough, I’ve never met any of them on the street by chance except for two. I’m terrible at recognizing people, so it’s no surprise that in both instances, the two had approached me first. Sadly, one of them has passed on since.
Then late last year, it was decided that we all should meet but no one took any action. I decided that I should not waste this opportunity. Anyway, I think among us, I am probably the most free. So it’s set – Sec 4(5) (1981) is having a reunion after thirty years.
Apparently everyone agree – for everyone in our contact list (except for one who needs to work that day) are coming. M and I decided we should try to locate more people.
She gave me a lead for our monitress. I went to the bakery she owns to look for her. The Aunty mending the counter looked at me with suspicion, as if I was a loan shark in my walking tee and shorts, and refused to diverge any information. I managed to get the name card and called the company. Thankfully the woman who answered the phone promised to relay the message. I’m still waiting for her to call.
Next, I decided to return to the shop in Orchard Plaza where I last met my classmate. Ten years ago (wow, the time just flies), Mike wanted to buy some Singapore Tees for his US colleagues and we went into this shop at Orchard Plaza. A familiar face called me. It was CH. She told me they own the shop. Knowing that, I had assumed I’d know where to find her when the time comes and never thought to take down her contact details. But later, whenever I stopped by at Orchard Plaza, I failed to see her around.
So yesterday, I went there with a hope that the shop is still around. Most of the shops there sell the same things and many are owned by Indians. The lone Chinese man in a shop reading newspaper there was my best bet and I went in. He is CH’s husband and he gave me her number.
Last night, she called and the years just melted away. We were rather close in class as she had sat in front of me. She was very happy to hear about the gathering and told me the shock she had when she read about our friend’s death in the obituary. I told her, if we don’t meet soon, we may only meet at 65. She replied, yes, better to see you all down here than up there!
M has also managed to locate a few more people. Hopefully, we can get half the class to turn up. I can’t wait to see all of them again.