Monday, June 16, 2014

(hashtag throwback)

These days I've just been hit with so much nostalgia I decided it was time to pour all my feels into a (probably sappy) blog post and hopefully these feelings will die down a bit. (it's just that it's pretty impossible to concentrate on actual revision with so many unpenned thoughts and feelings hahaha Idk anyway this is getting a bit incoherent I should stop now.)

So I shall just start off by saying that I AM IMMENSELY GRATEFUL TO HAVE BEEN PART OF THE ST. MARGARET'S FAMILY. God's hand was so clearly leading the way through the entire admissions process (appealed through basketball haha I'm secretly a jock 8-)) and also paving the way for me through my entire four years spent there. I really imagine what I'd be like right now if I had gone to a different school. Yes, it might sound a bit over-exaggerated but yes St. Marg's really did have a great impact on me.

From the beginning: (2010)
I stepped into St. Marg's not knowing a single soul there, except Joanne. Orientation was kind of dull and all because we weren't totally crazy-fied yet, which was a pity. Anyway, I remember feeling super proud of myself to have made three new friends (of different races too) on the first day of school!!! (Hansol, Ashley Lisa Jacob and Kimberlyn ha ha ha) Aw man I was such a eager beaver then hahaha.

Anyway, Sec 1 was a pretty bad period of my life (more of because I was really embarrassing) ((LIKE REALLLLLY hahaha I had Cleopatra-hair and actually thought the ah lian smile was cool)) but I had loads of fun. In fact, it could have been my most socially active year! Which explains the terrible results hahaha.

Got involved in a bit of drama (nothing big, just being immature kids heh) and got my first (and only!!!) detention. :-( But I also made great friends in Valerie, Daphne and Kelley! Daphne and I lived in the same condominium and she would just pop over as and when to watch movies/lepak at home with me and vice versa haha. I felt really cool having a friend who could just come over any time haha aww #firsttasteofindependence(ish)
ALSO one interesting thing that happened to us was getting stalked by creepy guys after playing Laser Tag haha it was really creepy eugh but on hindsight, it's a great story to tell to people hahaha.

Mm, also, another significant ~event~ (if you could call it that) was me joining band! To be honest, I only joined band because my friends were joining and we practically got cornered by band seniors to sign up during CCA Fair. It turned out to be one of the most un-thought-through yet best decisions I made! Junior Band was pretty dull but time past quickly enough with Rebecca always there to chatter and compare retarded things like whose instrument has more keys HAHAHA oh man, I feel slightly embarrassed but I mean we were kids pls don't judge us too badly. It was also my kinda band-crazy phase and I was pretty much obsessed with band.

I really really enjoyed Sec 1. :-)
Despite the photographic evidence being too painful to share HAHAHA.

Sec 2! (2011)

The year started off(ish) with SYF and I was so psyched to have gotten into the SYF band!!! I was just a Sec 2 then and rather unimportant in the band I suppose, so I was really proud of myself hehe. Despite all the hardcore practices, we still weren't able to clinch that sought-after Gold and settled for Silver. It was really really disappointing. I remember going for section outing after SYF, and then rushing back to Tanjong Pagar to hear the results released that same evening. We arrived at SCH JUST as the announcer was announcing the results for SMSB, and we literally just collapsed on the stairs and cried haha. Wow we sound like such babies but the feeling of disappointment was really...ugh. :-( I remember crying so bad that Ms Wee offered me tissue paper hahaha :'-)

Look at those puffy red eyes hahaha :'-(

After SYF, MTDC auditions rolled around and I got in!!! Was super excited because from what Regi/Lim An kept telling me, MTDC was really fun and you get to meet loads of talented bandies!
Naasyidah, Sang Ah, Ze Hui and I were the only ones from St. Marg's who got in, and I felt a little awkward at first because the only person I actually knew was Ze Hui! But after the many lunches/whatnot, I grew a lot closer to Naasyidah and Sang Ah and they've been lovely friends ever since! If not for MTDC, I would never have made friends with them haha (because apparently they hated me before HAHAHA oh well).

Also during that year, SMSB participated in the Australian International Music Festival in, no prizes for guessing, AUSTRALIA! It was seven days with great people, great weather and great music!!! What could be better, really. :'-)

(Quite a bad photo but perfectly encapsulates the spastic craziness going on 24/7/7)

We got to perform in the Sydney Opera House, during which I very cleverly left my seat-strap in the dressing rooms and had to support my 8kg instrument for the full 20 minutes of our performance hahaha. It doesn't sound like much because well, honestly it wasn't that bad. Still memorable nonetheless. :-)

What is probably the best photo-bomb ever?!?! hehehe
(That's our conductor, Ms Chong, by the way!)

Got to know Regi a bit more as well that year :-) We literally exchanged letters at least twice weekly haha I have a whole box of letters from her! We got so close that people started speculating that we were lesbians and that kind of put a strain on our relationship, but thankfully we got past that and now we're great friends :)

Well, it seems like Sec 2 was just full of band activities!
Outside of band, I found a really good friend in Kelley (spoiler: but sadly we haven't really spoken much since a dispute in Sec 3 :() and JAMIE. It's a funny story actually.

I met Jamie in Busybees tuition (BZB) and on the first lesson, I remembered seeing her face (the black, scary, I-want-to-kill-everyone face) around school before! I think we talked a bit on Twitter first, and I was really afraid that after talking on Twitter, it would be pretty awkward between us in real life. At first maybe it kind of was? I can't remember hahaha but after having lots of misadventures together (and succeeding in our first match-making attempt HAHAHA) we began to be more comfortable around each other and yeah I'm pretty glad she's in my life. :-)
(also we were both insanely step hahaha it's quite gross)

Sec 2 was also the year my grades started picking up so yay!!! :-) I managed to do well enough to get into 3/6 (Phy/Chem/Bio+Lit),

although I really wanted to go to 3/5 with Kelley and do Phy/Chem+Lit/Hist. :/

Sec 3! (2012)

Started the year (well, Chinese New Year) with Daphne, Valerie and Kelley at Kelley's house where we played with her cousins and just had fun :-) It was quite some time since the four of us hung out together so I was actually hoping we could use this as a start to re-start our friendships. 
(Sadly, that didn't work out and this was also the last time we hung out together. :()

#transformation haha Sec 3>Sec 4 with Daphne!
(you really should see the Sec 1 photos hahaha but no Daphne would kill me)

Started out Sec 3 loving my class, that was before all the stresses of school work and CCA started kicking in (and also ED)

This was during CCA Fair! I kind of recognise the time period of photos by looking at Kelley's hair HAHA. She got it all chopped off at the end/middle-end of Sec 2!

The first year I dressed up for RHD! I think by Sec 3, the St. Marg's blood was really ~in~ me already, and I was really enthusiastic for lots of events and other stuff.

I don't remember much from Sec 3, only that I started to get really hardcore in my studies and was basically kind of friendless hahaha. As in, I had lots of friends but no close friends I could trust entirely/hang out with regularly. I felt like a gypsy going from circle to circle and after a while, I got sick of it all and just decided to do my own thing haha. Baaaad decision, though. :(

On the bright side, I studied really hard and basically earned the license to take a chill pill in Sec 4!...which brings me to

Sec 4! (2013)

With this being the O-Level year, everyone started taking their work a bit more seriously and people had less time for fun and other leisure stuff. Which was the exact opposite for me haha. I found myself having lots of free time but with no one to spend it with because everyone was busy studying. Sometimes I wonder how things would've turned out if I'd been a social butterfly in Sec 3 and joined everyone else in mugging during Sec 4. Oh well, I'll never know, but it's just an interesting thought.

2013 was a great year, academic-wise. I like to think that I was coping with my subjects well because I had pretty good foundation from Sec 3.

Hansol and I would be the only ones lepak-ing before tests while others studied their notes furiously haha. Of course, we couldn't exactly slack off so openly or else people would be hating on us (which they might have haha oops) so yeah, I guess that kind of brought us closer together as well and now we have #jinsol!!! :-) I love our relationship. We hardly text/WhatsApp each other but we're still like best friends IRL. I think that's what everyone should be aiming for, (just imo), because what's the point of having online friends if it doesn't tally with what actually is in real life? Also, I think we give each other healthy competition, academics-wise. If she does better than me, I genuinely feel happy for her but yet at the same time this pushes myself to work harder, and vice versa! :-) And...yeah there's a ton of stuff which makes me really love and miss her which I shan't put here.

I really miss Hansol :(

MOVING ON, throughout 2013, I kept wishing that I'd have made more friends in Sec 3 because by the time you come up to Sec 4, everyone pretty much has their own cliques already and well it's kind of hard to fit in to any one clique all of a sudden. I did have friends but they also had their own cliques and I felt bad if I imposed on them haha so...yup, lone island is me. :( Then again, it wasn't all that bad, I suppose. It's not that I wasn't friends with my classmates.
I just wasn't that close to them.
But strangely enough, I miss being in a class with them haha that's the difference I guess.

On a brighter note, I had really lovely teachers!!! Mrs Rethinam, Mrs Yang, Ms Chang, Ms Tan, Mrs Tan, Mrs Chua, Mrs Low, Mrs Law, Mr ATK...they were really the best.

Mrs Rethinam really gave me the confidence in myself and pushed me to aim higher (and write better essays HAHAHA). Her lessons were really fun (well, most of the time), especially when she digresses and tells us anecdotes! It helps that she has a really nice voice/is a great story-teller so I'd always look forward to English lessons :-)

Mrs Yang's lessons were also great fun! Her passion for literature is actually pretty contagious so when she gets all ~in the zone~, you can't help but feel that same passion and interest for lit! She's also super dedicated and was willing to stay for endless consultations/mark endless self-timed essays/deal with antsy parents (hahaha)! She really is one of the few teachers I've had over the years who made learning come to life (such a cheesy phrase but it kinda encapsulates what I've to say). ALSO, she has a Twitter and Instagram account which she actually uses hehe much cool.

Of course, not forgetting Ms Chang!!! She's just so so so dedicated to band that sometimes I feel bad because she's always sacrificing her time/energy/money on band! She bought us all herbal tea during the period before SYF, would entertain our last-minute late-night S.O.S. messages and would be there for every single band practice if she could help it. SMSB really owes a lot to her and I'm thankful that we've such a dedicated teacher-in-charge at the helm of the band. :)
As a teacher, though, I'm glad Ms Chang also has a relatively high tolerance because most of us didn't really give our ~all~ to Chinese (even during MT intensives leading up to Os haha) and I think she was actually very worried for our class?!? It also didn't help that Clare, Cherie and I were really annoying class pests hahaha. But at the end of the day, I think we did pretty well, averaging an A2 (?)! Even Cherie got an A1 and she was barely awake during MT lessons hahaha!

Okaaay, this is pretty bad because I feel a bit biased elaborating more on Mrs R, Mrs Yang and Ms Chang (/laoshi haha) but truth be told, they're the teachers I miss the most and really helped me along my two years with them. I miss the classroom-y interactions with teachers where it really felt so home-y, compared to the cold lecture-tutorial system now in JC. :(

Okay, enough of this sappy stuff haha let's go on with the photo-puke.

Ironically, there were a lot more class parties that year hahaha.
Class parties always ended up becoming food/photo-taking/karaoke parties though, but hey! No one's complaining. :)

A little history: Basically Cherie, Clare and I are the biggest burdens in Chinese class HAHAHA. We talked a lot laughed a bit too much a bit too loudly. When the school invited this Chinese author (Han Han) to come to our school to give some sort of a talk to us, we decided to go take a photo with her and do the duck-face. (During that period the duck-face was all the rage hahaha) So yes we thought we were pretty #badass HAHA and well yeah this is how the Han Han Buddies came about. :)

My annoying-as-heck juniors who are sometimes nice and always funny hahaha. Sectionals were actually really fun with them!

With Mr A after SYF! Okay can we all just let me have a haolian moment now...
I remember during some SL meeting or other, Mr A actually told me that we're the "best bassoon section" he had among his schools haha I was like AWWW!?!?! ^_^
I don't think he was just trying to make us feel good or anything because trust me, he isn't exactly the kind to give unwarranted compliments where it is not due haha. So yup, I'm super proud of my juniors and hopefully they will pass on our ~section culture~ eyyy

thanks for making my band journey most a enjoyable and memorable one
(though sometimes frustrating hahaha)

SYF 2013 was great! We achieved a Distinction (but so did like 70 other bands so well...)
Most importantly, though, was the whole process that went in preparation for it. We changed conductors and got Mr Alvin to teach us, along with a whole new army of tutors haha. Mr A's style of teaching was really different from Ms Chong and it kind of re-invigorated my passion for band, I suppose. I began to see things in a different perspective which made things much more interesting. I'm really thankful to Mr A for giving me such an...eventful last year in band hahaha.

(MTDC buds still going strong after 2 years hehe)

Sang Ah, Jamie and I are in lit class together and somehow we all know one another so we kind of got together and yup, these are my lit buddies! a.k.a. one of my closest groups of friends in St. Marg's. :-)

GRADUATION DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So this was the last official day of school for us, before we went for our Study Break!

(Rather awkwardly placed photo but my OCD instincts demand that the photos be in chronological order)

I love love love St. Marg's and well, even as traditions change, the core of what makes us special will steadily hold on. It is the pride, the passion, the craziness and sometimes downright insanity that makes us who we are.

Everyone would have a different experience, and this is mine.
If I ever have a daughter, I'd definitely want her to experience the St. Marg's life.
(wow that escalated quickly)

Thank you St. Marg's
for being my second home the past four years
for helping me grow as a person
for giving me a wonderful bunch of friends
for showing me how to live
for being ever so supportive
for Everything.

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