Monday, October 27, 2008

Miss Grace Decker

I would like to add some detail to what I'd commented on Zawis "My Schooldays 1967 - 1968" .Heres what I commented

changgeh said...

From your account its true teachers those days were more than life itself. They earn respect rather than demand. Money to them is not everything. Not that they are well off but rather they knew which student came from a poor background and in whatever small way they could help they sincerely & willingly did it. How we missed them.

It was 1966, I was in the school library (doing nothing) when this Miss Grace Decker walked in; an American PeaceCorps. She happen to be the Library teacher and I was then the chief librarian.” What are you doing here dear, you should be in class” she lamented. I told her ”I could’nt because the form teacher had ordered me to go back home and get my school fees, it been due for a few months now”. I didnt go back but instead hid myself in the library hoping by the next hour it would be safe when another teacher took over the class. Even if I did go back, its pointless cause I knew my parent would never afford the school fees. Hence the hiding in the library. She took pity on me I think when she open her wicker handbag and started counting..1 dollar, two,three four ..until she stop at seven dollars. She handed the amounts and ”Go back to to the class and take this money to pay your fees.” And that ’s what I did.Its been 42 years since and I owed this teacher not the money but the kindness. I wonder where's she now. Thank you Miss Decker . I owe you one

Here is an old photograph of Miss Decker together with yours truly (extreme right) and few friends taken in 1966 at her house by the Batu Burok beach. She shared the house with another teacher by the name of Miss Carol who taught us English Literature. They're not just teachers but they are also friend. I'd been keeping this for the last 42 years.

A Closeup of her...aint she pretty?

Miss Carol in her Baju Kurung

The message she wrote at the back of the photograph she gave me.

Every weekend we would cycled to her house. And the house would be turn into a 'club' of sorts. We would gather and each and everyone of us would have a field day; swimming, playing guitar, reading books from her small library. Some would even have a joyride on her 50cc honda cub..she won't mind. One day a friend of our was caught for riding without a licence. She was very upset not because of riding without a licence but of being caught.