On the morning that my mother wanted to enroll me in SRK Gopeng, I felt uneasy. “Another induction process, urghhh”, I hesitated. But my mother pulled my hand. My sister was already waiting. We walked to the school. It wasn’t that far. When I was in Kuala Lumpur, my sister and I walked a much further distance. Initially in KL, my mother paid for one of the school vans to pick us up. But, I got into a lot of fights with the older boys. I was not sure why the bullying trend didn’t get much attention those days. These older students would either shove you for no reason or simply would grab the food in your hand. I got my songkok thrown around on one of those occasions. I was quite tall for my age. I didn’t choose to back down. I would simply pounce on them until somebody stopped the fight. I knew I had only me. My mother was too busy with her school stuffs. Eventually the news got to her, as one of the parents of the older boys came to my house. The older boy was crying saying I hit him. My mother knew me. She just absorbed whatever they were saying. “Kamu jalan kaki je la wa lepas ni”, she said afterwards. I just nodded.
Ohh where were we? Oh yeah first day in SRK Gopeng. The headmaster was a well known public figure. He’s a Dato’ now. Dato’ Siva Subramaniam. My mother recognized him and told me that he was one of the big guns in Cuepacs at that time. Again, I just nodded.
The tallest structure in that school were and still are the flagpoles. There is no double storey building at all. Not one. It was quite pleasant for me because I didn’t feel confined and in fact it was a welcoming sight. The gardens were well taken care of. The students didn’t seem like the hostile type. After a brief introduction with the headmaster, one of the teachers asked me my last exam result. “Ohh bagus ni, kami letak anak kamu dalam kelas yang pertama lah, 5 Pilihan”. My mother’s face was beaming after hearing such statement. “Kamu belajar betul-betul, mama kena pergi kerja. Balik karang kamu tahu jalan kan?” she asked. “Wa tahu, jangan riso le”. “Jangan di tinggal adik kamu tu”, and with that she left.
Immediately, when I entered the class, some of the boys approached me. Curious apparently.
In just one day, I felt welcomed. We talked as if we had known each other for so long. They were interested in my stories from KL and Cameron and I was interested in learning the local ways, the dialect, the interesting stuffs, the pastime activities. There was only one thing I didn’t tell them. I didn’t tell them because my mother told me not to. I looked at it as a must-keep-secret secret until I was about 17 years old when something happened and changed my perspective on the said secret. I’ll probably write down about what has happened but no promises 😛 .
So there was I, blending in nicely and I even formed a group based on one of the most popular cartoon series at that time, the X-Men! We called ourselves the X-Boys. HAHA kinda lame and dorky when I look at it now. Every now and then, while waiting for the teacher for the next subject to come in, we would write the names of the X-Men heroes on small little pieces of paper, crumpled them, put them in a box and passed the box around our tables. So for that day, whoever got whatever name that was written on the paper that he picked would be that character. There were Beast, Cyclops, Gambit, Cable, Colossus, and Wolverine. I loved Gambit so much. I still do actually. I was quite excited when I knew Gambit would be introduced in the X-Men, The Origins: Wolverine movie. Although he was only in the frame for like 15-20 mins, but to see your childhood hero materialized in a movie played by real people and doing one of his cool moves with his cards was like “SQUEALLL”!! Haha. My favourite line of his from the cartoon series: “The name is Gambit, remember it”, and then tebabo!!!!!! his cards exploded.
Man talking about my childhood hero has taken me away from the mood that I was supposed to be in to write this chronicles. I guess this is another “to be continued…”