Saturday, January 9, 2010
I Wish I Could Go Back To College/High School
One of my little projects this time returning home is the wholesale cleaning of the house. Our house is a humble little terrace house in which a modest little family has been accumulating rubbish for the past thirty years.
If you think I am joking, let me just point out that two of the rooms in my house have been unofficially converted into storage rooms (or store rooms as we affectionately know them).
My mum has said that I have "choong sau" (which literally means a heavy hand) meaning that I have been totally unsentimental and remorseless with getting rid of junk. That's me, the Nazi Against Sentimentality. The Anti Pack-Rat. The Scourge of Hoarders.
That was until I got to my room and started cleaning out my stuff, and dug up things from my high school, college and University days. A pile of cards, some of them beautifully handmade, some old school magazines and many pictures of me, eternally young in the various snapshots and photographs.
Wave after wave of nostalgia hit me, and reminded me that once upon several times, I had large groups of friends, penpals and secret admirers who remembered your birthday, agonised over which words to materialise their feelings and bravely inhaled the potential poisons of glittery stars and magic marker pens in order to tell you that someone was thinking about you.
Why is it that the passage of time makes friends that you swore once you would keep forever uncomfortable strangers once both of you went back on your promise to Keep In Touch, or the passage into adulthood necessitate that we drift further apart from these big groups into our little islands of isolation and self-sufficiency?
I remember watching Avenue Q with K in London, and there is a song there called I Wish I Could Go Back to College, a wistful look back to simpler and happier times, and well, isn't that the truth.
I put the cards and photographs away, knowing that they will sit there for another thirty years.