I've never been one for joining in things or joining clubs or regimental organizations such as the scouts or the ATC. That may explain why, when I was 4, that I wasn't at all happy when my mum decided to enroll me in the local kindergarten. All the other kids went and enjoyed it apparently but I was happy enough at home watching Marine Boy or Samurai or watching my pet fish swim around his jam jar.
When the day came for me to go to kindergarten, I'd already played up before the van arrived. Two happy, smiling Chinese people, a man and a woman came to pick me up. I can't really remember the journey to the kindergarten so don't remember if I kicked up a fuss or not. I probably just sat quietly because I was quite shy back then. I also don't quite remember what went on while we were there although I remember the kids all playing games on a small field. The strange thing was, that everyone in charge was Chinese and only spoke Chinese. Even before the end of the day, and even only being 4, I think that I could see a problem coming before it even happened.
Whatever we were doing, finished and everyone was taken home. Everyone that is apart from me! I'd been unhappy enough going in the first place but to be left behind as well soon had me very upset. I remember a Chinese woman talking to me and she was probably asking me where I lived but as she only spoke Chinese, we didn't get very far. I don't know how but eventually, very late in the day, I was returned home.
I thought with all the fuss that I made on my return, that that would be it. But, sure enough, the next day, the smiling Chinese couple turned up once more in their van to take me off again. I grabbed the table leg and refused to go. I remember my mum pulling my legs, perhaps all three of them did, but I wouldn't let go and eventually the Chinese couple left empty handed. So, that was the end of my education until I was forced to go to school at Kebunteh a year later. I can't remember ever enjoying school although I look happy enough in the photos!
The photo above shows me running into the sea at Sandycroft in Penang. I think I'm happy in this photo but I probably let out the same sort of shriek when the Chinese couple turned up in their van!