Back to school
Post-Thailand, I am on a frantic mission to complete the tasks set out on my missions list before I leave. With barely a week left in Malaysia, I am on an all-out to go through the list. So today, Sis and I make a trip to the school canteen, as is the custom with most alumni from our school.
“Do you remember what time recess is?” I ask Sis as we drive into the school car park.
“I don’t know,” she says. “10.10am? It’s been awhile since I was in high school.”
“And what about me??”
We can see the students are already out of the classroom and in the field. We decide to wait for a while, so we can stroll into the canteen just after rush hour recess time – not too early to be pushing with the kids, not too late before the cooks pack up.
Recess rush hour
I go for my favourite char koay teow and Sis orders her own plate too. We share the roti canai with sausage, and we eat in reminiscence of our primary and secondary school days.
As a librarian, I frequently misused my privilege to get out early for recess on the pretext of ‘shelving duties’. Many times I just wanted to beat the recess rush hour. Twenty minutes for 200 students is too short, so you find a way to beat the system.
After our meal, we decide to walk round the school compound. We visit the library, where many my hours were spent decorating notice boards and reading LIFE travel books.
We pass the makmal sains (science lab), which conjures up images of long wooden rulers used to snap us out of post-recess sleepiness.
The teachers don’t all remember you of course. You constantly have to remind them you were in the year when so and so was Head Girl. Unless you were a high-achiever or notoriously naughty, chances are you are insignificant. The in-betweeners get no credit.
After all that food, Sis and I head to the dentist to do our bid for dental hygiene. Nice.