Johnny…

Johnny was in my MUET (Malaysian University English Test) class in Lower Six one year. He was one of those students that one would take an instant liking to – very pleasant and polite but he did not stay long. After a while, he switched classes when he changed from the science to the arts stream so I did not teach him anymore after that.

However, we would see each other frequently in school and because he could sing very well, he would perform at any school function such as Teachers’ Day and the like.  Eventually, he went to Johore to further his studies in the university there.

I cannot remember how I came across him on Facebook – maybe his brother, Jaeden, told me about what happened and I decided to get in touch with him. I think I saw somebody’s comment asking whether he could remember him/her…and he said he was sorry because he could not. The poor boy was involved in an accident in Johore and as a result of the concussion, he suffered near total memory loss. I asked him if he could remember me and wished him well…and by George! He said he could!!! I was stunned!

Fast forward to the present, he is all right now – things eventually came back slowly but surely…and he graduated last year…and this Chinese New Year, he and his brother dropped by my house and their mum, when she came later to pick them up and take them home, passed to me two BIG fish because, in her own words, I had always been so nice to her sons. Blush! Blush!

I’m no authority on fish so I do not really know their names. I thought this was ikan sultan or jelawat

Steamed fish 1

My missus had it steamed…

Steamed fish 2

…and it was really very nice – soft and smooth unlike those that I used to buy from the market. They often had that horrendous mud smell so I stopped buying them altogether. However, after googling that up, I found that it was ikan tenggalan/menggalan (the mum did say a name that sounded something like that – probably the Foochow version of it) – you can read more about the fish here. I don’t know what the other fish is called though. I think I will save that for Chap Goh Meh so I suppose everyone will have to wait for a while before I will blog about it.

Thanks so much, Johnny and Jaeden, for dropping by…and to your mum for so very kindly and generously sparing me the fish. Qong Xi Fa Cai to all of you, all the best in the Dragon Year and God bless always.

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19 thoughts on “Johnny…

  1. You are such a nice teacher that your students keep coming back to you even though they have left school. Salute!

    I dunno. Most of them would tell me that I was fierce and they were all so scared of me… I thought I was always sooooo nice. :(

  2. Hey, u should have uploaded pics of Johnny and Jaedan giving u the fishers, and boy, did Johnny remembered that you loved food! :)

    No, we never had anything to do with food. I think it was because I was always encouraging, always supportive of his interest – his love for singing.

  3. Ikan sultan cost a lot……..
    u must b fortunate…….. Always got lots of things frm ur ppl
    If u ever had too much of food.. Do send me by post…
    I don’t mind to pay 4 d postal fee……

    Ya…I saw somewhere that it’s very expensive in West Malaysia. Dunno the market price here as I have not bought for a long long time. I’m really very flattered…but at the same time, I feel very bad as in my family, I was brought up to believe that one good turn would deserve another. If people give me things, I must reciprocate and give something in return…and being a retiree, I don’t see how I can. :(

  4. Bravo cikgu, if only more teachers are like you, then we shall have more good people like Johnny…

    No lah, he and his brother are very well brought-up sons – much loved…especially by the mum. Good parenting, that’s what matters most.If rice already becomes porridge, not much can be done anymore.

  5. wow nice! cant remember others but you! haha!
    hoho! and the two big fish!

    I was so very surprised…and very pleasantly so!!! Perhaps that helped trigger the recall of some of his past memories… ;)

  6. Gosh.. this teacher here really receives much respect from the students and their parents as well… *salute*

    I don’t know really – I was always…being myself. Nice when students are nice, strict and sometimes even fierce with the wayward and recalcitrant ones – after all, I am only human but I guess I must have done something right at the time. :)

  7. oh, isn’t it great that he could still remember you even though he’s got a total memory lost?? hmmm, you must either be greatly (or badly) influential to him, haha.. and i think it’s always nice to meet up with people whom you’ve not meet or lost contact since some many years back.. and of course, enjoying that fish!! :p

    Ya, see my reply to Claire… Maybe they saw me as being more than just a teacher – a friend or perhaps, a father even – I dunno. I was always…myself. What you see is what you get.

  8. The teacher who has students remembering him/her after school is a very good one indeed. :)

    Sorry to hear about his near total memory loss, car accidents are always very tragic incidents.

    Hey, that looks like the kind of fish I would enjoy eating. I love steamed fish, plain with just a bit of soy sauce. :D

    Hah!!! Too bad you’ve gone back or I could have asked you over to eat it with us – really big…for two, me and my missus. Ya…but Man proposes, God disposes and accidents can happen anytime – just hope and pray it will not happen to us. Hmmmm….not all teachers are remembered in a favourable light though! LOL!!! :D I hope I do not fall into that category… ;)

  9. A big pat for you. See, you are always in the hearts of those who know you, far and near… That is great for someone who suffered nearly total memory loss to remember you… looks like a miracle happen. Salute you, Arthur.

    I was pleasantly surprised myself. I never realised that I had made such an impact on him.

  10. The steam fish looks nice. That is sultan fish kah?. If I am not wrong, sultan fish scales is a bit blackish & brownish in colour and looks shining.

    You are right. It isn’t. I’ve googled it up and edited my post, giving its correct name – tenggalan or menggalan, it is called. You can click the link to see somebody’s post on it.

  11. Quite a sad story but glad it ended well…the car accident,I mean. You are such a nice person/teacher. No wonder you are well liked and well remembered…even for someone with memory loss. Evidence given!!

    Ya…it was so sad. I did not tell the whole story – he said that he spent 8 months in a medical centre here (must have spent a fortune)…and the fractured leg bone did not rejoin…and he had to go to another one in Kuching for surgery…and there were metal pieces and screw all over the leg outside…and eventually he had to go back there to get everything removed. Thank goodness, his leg has healed – he said it’s very ugly but he did not show me. I’m glad it’s all over now – he can walk already, has graduated and will go to work in Singapore soon. All that must have been a traumatic experience for him and his family…

  12. if not mistaken Sultan fish is very expensive ones. They caught or bought?

    Not Sultan, something like it…and I think even more expensive. Probably bought – mad rush before the new year, markets all crowded, roads all jammed…and that was why I did not bother to buy any fish (or anything for that matter). In the end, also got two. Hehehehehehehe!!!!

  13. Good to hear that Johnny is back on track and this does remind us that we never know what may come our way…

    Yes, live life to the fullest and give thanks and praise the Lord for each passing day… :)

  14. Very sad story of Johnny, but glad now he is all well and he remembers you!!! You must be very very fierce teacher and till now he still afraid of you cannot wipe you off from his memory! LOL *just kidding*

    Tenggalan!! Yes, nice fish, my favourite too!! Can get from Kapit area? I remember last time my grandpa use to buy a lot this type of fish back.

    Oh? If I’m not mistaken, it’s related to tanggadak…which is around RM200 a kg? Very expensive fish! Ya…I must have been an unforgettable nightmare – yee nang wang! LOL!!!

  15. Wa…the students’ parents sayang you ..salute la :) I have never eaten such fish before… it does look delicious…slurp. You are one lucky teacher :)

    I am… Very very lucky. Annie-Q says it’s Kapit upriver fish… Must be very expensive then – don’t think I would be able to afford any fish from there…around RM100-200 or more a kg! It was really nice though.

  16. LOL… nice being a teacher, isn’t it? My students give me stuff all the time… but… uh not always food…sometimes weird stuff that they made themselves…

    Somehow, not only my students but friends also will give me…food. I wonder why!!!

  17. Teachers like you are soon-to-be-extinct! ;)
    It looks like a jelawat. When i was still a schoolboy, I remembered it was a craze back then. Every fish lover would order jelawat (or Sultan) fish from the Pahang rivers and KL restaurants charged top dollars for it.
    +Ant+

    Not so soon, I hope. I’m still around… ;) LOL!!! Ya…there is a resemblance – that’s why I was confused at first but I managed to google and found out what exactly it was.

  18. Pingback: One more… « …Still crazy after all these years!

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