Saturday, March 5, 2011

I Want To Run Through The Halls of My Primary School

Coming out from an evening shift yesterday, I walked in the cold dark night towards my car. I was trying to think warm thoughts (hot cocoa, a blazing campfire, a thick padded jacket, a refrigerator, a polar bear, ice cream, air-conditioning, the North pole, ... thinkwarmthoughtsthinkwarmthoughts) and bravely walk to my car, when my shrunken manhood decided to run. like. hell. for the car.

And so I ran - the wind against my face, my heart pumping in my ears, my stethoscope swinging threateningly close to my jaw and my keys jangling in my work trousers. I couldn't help but smile as I finally reached my car, feeling as exhilarated as a five year old who had won first prize in the egg-and-spoon race in his kindergarten.

It was times like these which reminded me to love my knees while I still have them. I think about how one day at sixty, when my back will betray me and my knees will be nothing but a distant beautiful memory, I will surely miss them dearly.

Random Memories: Eight Years Old

I was never very athletic. I couldn't sprint, I couldn't jump, my shot putt was more like a short putt. I couldn't kick a ball straight to save my life, and always return the shuttlecock straight into the net. My favourite swimming style was kicking your feet randomly while holding the edges of the pool, or drowning. Basketball was more like under-the-basketball.

And so every little victory counts. I had won a silver medal once when I was eight during my school's Sports Day. I remember wearing the medal proudly around my neck as my little feet staggered up the bus, the medal gleaming as it swung across my tummy.

Hey Everyone! Look at me! Mr. Second Place in the Egg-In-The-Spoon Race.

I walked past two boys, one from St John's, and the other one from a Chinese school.

Oi! Give us a look! the bespectacled Chinese boy reached for my medal as I stood before him, beaming proudly.

Wow! Second place in the egg-and-spoon race! Not bad ah! he seemed genuinely happy for me.

The 13-year-old St. John boy came up and then looked at the inscription on the back. Cheh! his mouth sneered in disdain. It's not even a proper race. It's for primary school kids one lah!

I continued smiling but inside I was crestfallen.

Eh, okay what, their field is quite big one, you know, the Chinese boy said in my defence.

The secondary school boy turned his head away, his condescending sneer taking the shine off my highest ever achievement in sports.

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