Friday, June 03, 2005

mer de noms: ling

Recollecting Ling...

I met Ling the year I stopped shifting school for good. I was in primary six then. I was one of those kids that sat in the corner, way in the back, shooting rubberbands and folded V-shaped paper at the back of other classmates' heads. She was the girl that sat in back, in the other corner of room. I never spoke to her much in the beginning. I only addressed her as Ling and know her as just another chinese girl in the class. I wouldn't call her pretty. All I can recall now is her bob-cut hair ala Vivian Chow in the 80s, an exact replica down to the wide cloth headbands that was popular back then. She wasn't outstanding in sports or studies. Just another normal chinese girl in a chinese neighbourhood. Come to think of it, she was kinda ah lian-ish if I look back now. But she was different. She was quiet and composed, unlike the guys who were a bunch of monkeys. She was mature. And shifting school every one to two years, I took a long time to warm up to girls. I'm an expert in art of being lansi eventhough I was trying very hard to actually say hello. So it happened a week or two after school started, when we by chance looked in each others general direction, caught each other stare, smiled and said hello.

It's a weird time, these pre-teen periods, when feeling transitions between buddy buddy boy-girl to something else we wouldn't thought would happen. It was halfway through the year when I found that I liked her a little bit more than "one of the guys". We would walk to school and back everyday. We would climb trees and bitch about school. We would hang out by the mining pool/fishing pond, skip rocks across the surface and talk about cartoons. And during the school holidays, me, her and some of the classmates would all go downtown in a group to hang out. Back then, The Mall was a kickass place. It was the place to be due to being the only shopping complex with a indoor fun park in town and The Mall is actually on the bus route that services my neighbourhood. So it's all good.

I never did actually told her I liked(loved?) her. Heck, in actual fact, I don't even know what I felt. The word like and love was so alien and foreign to the young me. In cantonese, "chung yee" is so universal. I could never forget that she said once "ngor chung yee pong lei hai mai yat chai. Ngor pong lei hai mai yat chai, hou hoi sum...". I guess the feeling was mutual, I was "hoi sum" as well. But I just couldn't accurately pin this "hoi sum" feeling to something bigger than just being happy that she was there to do all those things with me. But then the school year ended and everybody was busy looking for secondary schools. Being boys, being still kids... I wasn't too worked up about choosing secondary school, So I followed the guys, while she went to another secondary school in the same district. And being a stupid boy, I never bothered to ask her for the home number nor her address. But I still have a picture I took with her back then on the last day of school. We looked happy in the picture, like we always do when we're together. It's slightly faded and dog-eared, but it's still there in my photo album, in it's own special little pocket...





Track Of The Day: Zhang Hong Liang - Mei Li De Hua Wu Tieh

2 Comments:

Blogger devoid said...

Now it's my turn to have visuals, and it's the film's a light matt jade green, fuzzy and crackly like silent movies.

Damn, what a happening un-sterile place to be growing up in.

5:41 PM  
Blogger seth.frostheart said...

sam: *smiles* really? wow, i mean your writings gives me this 16mm wong kar wai-ish grungy sorta waking dreams, which is all cool. my offer to you still stand. let me do what i have to do for what we need to have to shoot our indy stuff. i bet we'll kick ass :D

yea, looking back now at my pri and sec sch days, it felt so damn surreal. felt like a freaking hk school days drama. Right down to the gang land fights, love triangles, motorbike chases etc. Except that I was in the wrong country.

9:17 PM  

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