Written on Saturday, 28th of July 2007 , 00.00 a.m.
Right after my possibly last emcee-ing task in the college’s events. ( I think there is no need to hide this fact since Beefy had put it in his Bitter Sweet Gala Dinner post in his blog. )
It is midnight and I am more than just tired. My joints are aching, and my abdominal pains start to make their attacks. I have been running since morning, and when finally the much-awaited event is over, I found myself overwhelmed with air of relief. The event was a graduation dinner.
The dinner is an annual event held to celebrate the success of our graduates. My friend NH was the appointed project lead. Initially, Beefy and I were the appointed emcees, however, further down the road, our roles changed into emcee + drama/multimedia team’s slave drivers.
After many strange, tiresome days, finally came the day when the show had to go on, and I could proudly say, it was quite a success (much thanks to our poor students ^^). What NH, Beefy and I had in mind was to concoct entertainment that would take our graduates to the trips down the memory lane. How lovely was that idea. Not just the graduates that were brought to the nostalgic mood, I got sucked into as well.
As I announced the names of graduates that belong to the batch of April 2006, I smiled in reminiscence. This batch is the first batch of Final Year students that I taught. They were the first people who went with me in my very first assignment in Kuching.
I still remembered the very details of that trip. My first out of country assignment in this college, I was terrified and I was extremely worried. The night before, I tried to ensure that I did not lose anyone’s tickets and that I have all the contacts I need in Pontianak and Kuching. As Murphy’s Law went, on the scheduled date, January 8th 2006, I nearly missed the flight. I was the one who held the tickets, so nobody could board the plane without me! I thought to myself, “Yep, that’s it! You are so doomed”, and my career in this college would soon be over.
Thankfully, fate was kind enough, all students and myself still managed to board the plane. We arrived in Pontianak and then went on a 9-hours bus ride to Kuching. Throughout the journey, I was so tensed because there were 36 students and being a new lecturer, I still could not recognise each one of them well.
In each stop, I ensured that nobody got left behind. When we eventually reached our hotel in Kuching, the sky had darkened, it was about 8.30 pm. I had dinner with the students in an eatery called Happy Valley, and that was when suddenly all the students were wishing me a happy birthday. I did not even remember it was my birthday. Suddenly, I was engulfed with comfort and joy. I relaxed and threw the tense in my nerves away.
In each of the graduate I met tonight, I saw my life- with them in it, being rewound like a film. I remembered grading their essays, projects, and assignments. I saw Lie Andry’s overpowered by his enormous appetite gulping food after food. I always marvelled at how he always stayed skinny.
I got reminded of Henny’s fascinating stories, Okta and her snake pet, Helmy’s determination in his study and his penchant for LV bags. The pages then flipped back at the various crazy things done by Rudolph and Soeprapto, the two menaces came with their parents, so they tamed down ^^.
The aloof but hard working Christian was seen with his buddy, Eddy that sported a typical Chinese gangster look. Oh, and the very noisy, hyperactive Rico was there as well. Apparently he had recently hooked up with Elene (tsk tsk tsk..). I got reminded of many of my former students who did not make it to the event as much too. Verly had the warmest smile, Yulianti who was forever chatty, Indah, Edward, Rissa, Mada, Buan, Gary, Sanny, and the list goes on…
It is awkward for an emcee to be all tearful and emotional, so I refrained from doing so during the event. However, I felt the need to express my feelings in the most genuine ways, for instance, through this post.
I could not help myself to tell all of my former and current students how glad I am to have them as my students.