Haven’t really been blogging over the past few months because I was so busy. I couldn’t really find time to really sit down with a cup of freshly brewed coffee and complete a blog post. There are so many things that I felt like blogging about but because of time
I think I will update this blog with my trip back to SRJC earlier this month. It was the last Will Run ever to be held in the college. It was a pity that I couldn’t make it back in time for the run. However, I managed to reach the college in time with Vivian for the post-run carnival.
Actually, my main purpose there wasn’t about the carnival. It was to capture some moments and to revisit some of my memories. It doesn’t felt like I’ve been away for 4 years. I thought I’ve left the college for good back in November 2013, but I still kept coming back to visit my ex-classmates, CCA mates and juniors. I don’t know what made me still want to come back despite how badly I had wanted to leave.
It wasn’t even a tough decision to make. I didn’t feel at home or attachment to the college over that 10 months when I was there. I tried to isolate myself from everything and anything — but it was impossible because of my status as a representative of the class. I ended up exposing myself to more people and events.
I never really settled in but I am still thankful for the people and culture that make my short stay at least a memorable one. From Thespian to Will Run to SR Thanksgiving, these are the memories that will be deeply rooted right inside of me. I think that’s why I developed that sense of belonging over time but I left even before it could be fully ‘developed’.
Since the school is going to be gone, I felt a need to revisit some of the memories — those familiar yet not so familiar memories. The feeling is like, you developed the slightest feeling for something yet you realised you don’t really know that something really well. Ok, I don’t really how to explain using descriptive that everyone else understand. (That’s why I’d always lived inside my own utopia)
Places of SR
I think I shall start with this. This is the foyer of the college, with the words ‘Discere Servire’ imprinted alongside the college crest on the facade. The phrase means to learn, to serve in Latin, which no doubt makes the strong core value that is deeply rooted within the culture of the college.
I shall carry on with the some of the places I was kind of attached to during my time there.
During the first half of the school year, when I still have that slightest of motivation in me, I could be found inside this reading room known as ‘The Study’. The girl was seated right at my usual spot or, I would say, my favourite spot in the room. Why so? In fact, I have no idea why except that it was one of the nearest towards the exit of this part of the room. I could vividly remember how I tried to rush my Econs or Chinese Lit homework right to the final second. It was my war zone.
In case anyone is wondering how the GNC looks like. This place would be filled up and the long queues started to form especially when everyone came out of the General Paper’s lectures. All for their puff, ice cream and most importantly, ice lemon tea. Perfect way to destress right after a stressful GP lecture.
My second half of the year was spent mostly (less lesson time)
One of the most iconic places in the college – De Yuan. We were introduced to this place right from the start during the orientation days. Built with the money the alumni and seniors before
However, the pool ended up having another main purpose: to dunk whoever celebrating their birthday that day into the pool. Although I had not personally been thrown into the pool before
Alternatively, if anyone wants to relax, I recommend staring at this fountain, which is located just a few footsteps away from De Yuan. The fountain has some therapeutic effect somehow.. I felt at ease every time I walked past that area to and fro lessons.
Who could have not visited this place when they were still studying in SR? Uncle Henry’s is the place to get almost all the things you’ll need in class, that is, our lecture notes and tutorial book. We’ve also went there to print stuff as well. Being a class rep, I think I frequent there quite often to collect those booklets and yes, I still remember having to chase after the whole world for money to pay the uncle. Trust me, that wasn’t a pleasant experience, given how soft a person I am.
Nah, it wasn’t that tidy when the semester was going on. You could see notes piling up right at every corner waiting to be collected.
The Performing Arts Theatre, or more commonly called the LT5, is the biggest lecture theatre we have in the college. Although I had my GP lecture there, together with the rest of the ~1000 students from my cohort, I remembered this place more for SR Drama’s rehearsals and the 2 Thespian productions where I returned as alumni.
The General Office. Not that I really have much memories of that, apart from going in there to retrieve my withdrawal form. HAHAHA. Ok, I’ll probably need to mention the two entrances at both sides of the office (not in photo) where the teachers’ pigeon holes and the telephone to call the teachers are located.
I remember collating and handling in forms and worksheets/tutorial books to the teachers via the pigeon holes. Oh ya, you would see the area being cluttered with notes and gifts during Teachers’ Day. That’s probably the only occasion when the area seems more livelier.
The school field played another big part during my time there. It was on this field where I started training for long distance running. From 3km to 4km to 5km and slowly progressing to 10km, it was here where I picked up running. I finished my first long distance (9.3km) here in the morning of 3rd August 2013. I recalled receiving the prize on behalf of the class later that day as an appreciation for clocking the longest total mileage (I think).
Faces of SR
SR would be just another college if they were without the human factor. It was the people that makes the college rather unique from others. I was fortunate to meet 2 of the very familiar faces during my visit that morning: the security uncle and the drink stall auntie, and had a small chat with them before carrying on with my itinerary.
Everyone knows Uncle William. He is probably the first person that you will encounter at the college gate. Having been serving the college for 11 years, Uncle William is more familiar with the school than any other alumni and probably most teachers as well. During our short conversation that day, he shared with me about how the rate of late coming is on a rise. I ain’t that surprised because after all, we students take our own time to stroll into the college after loitering outside. The thought of it just makes me smiled a little with slightly some sense of guilt.
When asked about what he had after the merger, Uncle William calmly replied that he will wait for the instructions from his company and is ready to be redeployed to another place.
Of course, I didn’t forget about the ever so friendly drink store auntie. It still awed by the fact that she could recognise and remember almost
For someone — who meets hundred and thousands of new students and teachers every year — to remember a random dude whose existence in the college can be considered to be quite negligible, it requires a whole new level of memory skills. I swear her brain is made up of thousands TB of memory space. HAHAHA
Of course, there are more faces in SR that either I didn’t manage to meet or ain’t that familiar for me to approach for a feature without feeling awkward. And oh oh oh, see the poster above? The five alumni has been the ‘faces of SR’ since my year. Not sure about the guzheng and the dance girls, but Fayuan, Siyinn and Neesha were the people whom I am familiar with because they were my batch mates.
After going through a round of reminiscent since the start, it’s time for me to at least touch on the topic that makes the title of the post: Will Run. As I said earlier, we came after the conclusion of the run. However, we managed to walk down the ‘memory lane’ where the posters from past events were being put up for display.
Alright, I didn’t expect that to have actually still kept these gigantic ass posters. I mean, these posters should have taken up quite a bit of space in the store, shouldn’t they?
Viv wore her 2012 Will Run event tee, so it was only relevant if she took a photo under the poster for the 2012 event. That was her first year in the college, running her first Will Run.
I arrived to the college a year later, so the 2013’s event was my first Will Run and my only run as a current student of SR. I couldn’t reiterate again how much this run has been a life changer for me. I am just thankful that I came here, got stuck here and forced to embark on a long-distance training. I am sure that I couldn’t be taking part in half-marathons (and signing up for my first full marathon 5 years later at the Singapore Marathon 2018). Thank you Siao Running JC.
This is probably the second last or final time (if I couldn’t make it for the Farewell on 8 December) that I’ll be stepping foot into this compound before the entire college moved over to Anderson JC. I am glad that I went back to capture some of the memories so that I will never forget my time there — despite how bad it was. I guess my love-hate relationship with the college is something I still couldn’t explain till date. The hate was obvious, but the love portion? I guess it lies in the friendship, experience, exposure and opportunities (in drama and running, more specifically) that eventually shaped my bond with SR will now.