Ah, Spring

The results are out and I didn’t do as well as I hoped. I’ll probably get slammed for saying that a GPA of 3.78 is a bad grade, but it’s frustrating to miss an A by one or two marks for so many courses. Looking on the bright side, at least I’m back on track in getting my high distinction, equivalent of a 1st class honours. That of course depend heavily on how I perform in my fourth, and hopefully, final year.

Believe it or not, I used to be one of the poorer students in class. I can still remember those days back in VS when our chemistry teacher Mr Goh Khern Hai would hand us back our tests in ascending order; that is, students with the lowest marks were called up first. Neo, Yeow Seng and I would be sitting at the back and crossing all our fingers and toes, praying that we wouldn’t be the last in class again. Although we often occupy the last few spots, none of us was ever a reigning champion; the honour of getting Mr Goh’s headshake and his customary “What happened?” question was passed around regularly. We already had a sense of fair play even at such a young age.

And of course, there was the kite-flying incident. It was our first A Maths test, and Mr Phua Chee Gua was reprimanding Joon Leng about how atrocious (that was the exact word he used) his result was. The entire class was laughing at him before Mr Phua turned and told me that I could go fly a kite with my marks. It was a moment of revelation for me: not only did I realise kite-flying was incompatible with being a good student, but that mathematics would remain my nemesis for the rest of my academic life.

I’ve come a long way, from one side of the bell curve to the other; and I consider myself very fortunate since where I am today has a lot to do with luck. Not that it matters at the moment.

Right now, I’m just going to sit back and enjoy the beautiful spring weather in Toronto before I return the tropical — which is just a catchy term used by tourism promotion boards for hot and humid — country named Singapore.

A place I call home.

15 May 2004 · My Life

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