Let’s twist again…

After our own reunion the night before, we joined the grand one the following evening – the annual reunion dinner of our school’s alumni or old students’ association combined with the alumni of our sister-school next door…


…at the massive ballroom in a leading hotel in town.

Frankly, I’m not too fond of attending functions there as the food may not be all that great and I get put off by the fact that going through a small road all around the hotel into the hotel’s multi-storey car park entrance at the back of the building is not entirely a breeze. Where there are events in every ballroom or function room in the hotel, just going round the corner may take at least half an hour. Tsk! Tsk! Well, the only thing one can do to avoid the massive jam is to go very very early – and that was what we did that day.

To pass the time, we took photographs or had ours taken…


…in the still-very-empty venue.

We occupied two tables – the Class of 1969…


…and minus our family and friends, I think there were some 15 of us altogether…


…including people back from Australia and Kuching. We only had two Form 5 classes then – one Science and one Arts with a student population of 30-40 in each class. That means that only around 25% of us were there that night. We had a few more joining our own reunion gathering the night before but on the whole, there weren’t exactly that many either.

Never mind, we were all right by ourselves and dinner started with the sio pua (hot dish)…


– our version of the Four Seasons except that we usually have more than four.

The not-to-be-named soup followed (Tsk! Tsk!!!) and after that came the duck stuffed with glutinous rice…


Unfortunately, it was not as well done as the last time I had that at this same venue. Perhaps, when there are simply too many tables to cope with, quality may have to take a back seat?

The steamed fish was good though…


…and I noticed that those who came back from overseas were really enjoying each and every course, including this one…


Perhaps they do not get to go for such grand Chinese banquets abroad as often or as regularly as we do here – so much so that we tend to take it all for granted and are not in the least excited over them? I remember feeling this way when I was small and kids were very rarely invited and when I/we did get a chance to go, we would be so intensely happy at the opportunity.

They did not bother with this dish though…


– the black pepper lamb! You can bet the meat came from where they all came from and they get it fresh, not frozen, and a whole lot  juicier over there.

This band from the army was in attendance during the dinner…

ARD 10

…though they weren’t anything to get excited about. They were not all that great but I would not say they were not good either – let us just say that they were tolerable…which would be exactly what I would say about the proceedings that whole evening – pleasant enough, nothing to get anyone jumping with delight.

There was a dance presentation by some very young boys and girls – and I thought that was a good time to go for a pee break and a whiff of fresh air. Honestly,  I can’t understand how cliche and how terribly boring one can get – and frankly, I think we have long had an overkill of that oppa gangnam thingy and the worst part was they could not even do it well – my daughter said that they were merely going through the steps and motions – they did not have a feel to it and were not able to let it come across naturally as in real dancing per se….and guess what? I saw a photograph in a local newspaper – they even got the big shots and some others to join in the dance – obviously, it did not make much of an impact as when I came back after it had all ended, no one was talking about it and I did not even know there was such a thing going on. My missus said they could not see what was going on from where they were sitting so they did not know about it either. Hehehehehehe!!!!!

Some very old retired teachers were invited by the organisers to cut the cake (in the first photograph) but no, they did not ask me to join in. They probably were specially invited to the function as well and no, I was not invited either – I was there in my capacity as an ex-student, not a retired teacher of the school and I bought my own tickets to attend the dinner, thank you very much. I guess the people organising would be those older ones – not those young ones that I taught while I was attached to the school and that probably explained the special treatment accorded to those teachers of theirs a long, long time ago.

Then they kept thanking those from certain years for their support – one group took up 6 tables, it seemed. Awwww…come on!!! If all of us from 1969 were to attend (including those already dead and gone) we would not be able to fill 5 tables – there were simply not that many of us at the time. Tsk! Tsk! The last straw was when one of those groups took to the stage to sing this Emil Chau song that night.

Ok, that called for some drastic action – with all that heralding and back-thumping of all those very much younger groups, we had to do something to make our presence felt – we, the super seniors! Picking out a dvd that I had brought along, I marched up to the emcee and told him that the Class of 1969 would be singing right after that 1980 group on stage and we did – the whole group of us, all individually over 60 years of age…and boy, did we steal the limelight that night!!!

We sang this Cliff Richard number (Song starts at 1:00)…and I would say that we did a pretty good job at it and brought the house down.

Then, when we reached the music interlude break in the middle of the song, I shouted, “Everybody, dance!!!” and somehow or other, everybody got down to it right away – twisting and gyrating to the music. Gee! Had it not been for the song blaring full blast through the gigantic speakers in the ballroom, I am sure everyone would have heard all our rusty bones squeaking and creaking harmoniously in unison…and when the music came on again towards the end of the song, I said, “One more time!” and there we went again, twisting away till the very last note of the catchy song.

The Young Ones
*Photo Credit: Ex-SHS official photographer, Mr Chiew Chong Hui*

That was spontaneous, unrehearsed…and so much fun!!!  We enjoyed it a lot and so did everybody present at the event that night. It was indeed a memory for us to cherish and I guess one that some people would remember us by – that Class from 1969!!!