I'm going to tell you about my high school.
Before continuing, I would like to state that these are MY memories from MY point of view so it may differ from any other person who might have went through the same experience.
From the age of 13, I went to an all girls boarding school in Seremban, Negeri Sembilan. The five years that I was there was an important experience that shaped a lot of the person that I am today. When everyone looks back at their own high school days, they look back in fondness of the memories but of course, it was never all sweet and honey. Going through the experience in your teenage years multiplied the emotions tenfold, it was extra in every way. That is why it is all so memorable.
Although the whole point of school is study, I don't particularly remember that part. Maybe because I was never the studious type and being in the top school in the country makes my academic achievements pale in comparison to others, therefore not worth mentioning. I remember the other experiences that are mostly outside of the classroom. The fun part. If asked what was the most valuable experience that I would hold on to in my high school years, it would probably have to do with the performances that we did for the many occasions we hosted for whatever reason may be.
All year round, there were parties. House parties, CS parties, table parties, class parties, birthday parties, dorm parties..... and then there were celebrations, Teachers day, Friendship day, OGA day, April Fools, Merdeka...... and then there are competitions, English Drama, Talentime, Sports day.... and depending on your chosen curricular activities, for me it was Police Cadets and Art Club. And all of these occasions were always presented is the grandest most spectacular scheme available. I later learned that that was where our ferocious need to excel beyond expectations in every single endeavor in our life came from.
After 3 paragraphs I figured I had to break down the story into parts. I can't squeeze 5 crazy years into 1 entry. I've put off writing about this for so long until I saw the pictures of my old school on Facebook uploaded by my ex Biology teacher, Mr Tan Hock Ann (thank you Sir, I am grateful). So for this entry I would just tell of 1 memory.
Tun Fatimah (Blue) House Party 1994.
Late one night, the fourth formers who were the party organizers came to our dorm Canna after lights out. All 30 of us first formers came down from our double decker beds to listen to our secret mission for our first ever house party. House parties are costume parties. Each house (there are four) tries to outdo the other to throw the most elaborately decorated themed party. Each dorm in the houses are given a specific theme for our costumes and we also have to come up with a performance to perform in front of the others. All this is done in secret and no other dorms are supposed to know of any one else's theme until the day of the party. Any leaked information would be forfeited (so they say).
This was all exciting stuff to me. Our given theme was - ghost and ghouls. Being someone who loves to dance, only one image popped to my head, Michael Jackson's Thriller. Through our dorm meeting discussions over late supper (air Wahi & Sugar Bun pastry from the dining hall), we decided to do a dance number involving the whole entire dorm that will be opened by a short sketch by 3 witches ala ala the Hocus Pocus movie we watched earlier during Film Show held every 2 Saturdays at Dewan Budiman. The three witches would be Irah, Oya and Ipah for their excellent acting capabilities and Chipook as the Book of Spells. The rest of us ghouls was lead by me as the choreographer along with Olin, Zureen and Sausan.
Unfortunately, it was a time before broadband and downloadable MP3s and one year before Michael Jackson's Dangerous compilation, so we couldn't get the Thriller soundtrack. We made do with what we had - Ace of Base, I Saw The Sign. Yes, laugh people (hey it was the 'in' song at that time okay). We were given a month to prepare, amidst classes, we managed to practice our routine and sew our costumes at the same time. The dorm was a horrible mess, 30 girls trying to dance in the dark aided only by corridor lights trying to be as quiet as possible so as not to piss the 5th formers studying in the lounge with our 'membadakness' (stomping). We pushed all the double decker beds together to make space. It was a feat. For me, choreographing a dance that was easy enough for everybody to follow yet cool enough for the audience was a tough challenge. I wish I had Youtube, haha, I could have done so much better.
Under the stress and pressure, fights broke out. I remember one particularly involving Irah and Ipah where I actually saw Irah literally flew accross me and Oya to attack Ipah. Its funny when I think of it now, but it was quite dramatic when it happened. I think it was something about Irah's stuff on Ipah's bed, I'm not sure. But I remember Oya's face holding a needle and thread when that happened. Priceless.
And the day came for the House Party. One of the coolest tradition for House Parties was that the fourth formers had closed off an entire flight of staircase from the fourth floor of the building and had tranformed it into a tunnel complete with slides and surprise pranks. All the people had to go through the tunnel to be presented at the end of it for the fifth formers and the rest of the house members.
I remember Sausan's black lipstick became public property as all of us tried to get ready in front of the limited mirrors at the front of the dorm. With my limited sewing skills, I decided to become Eddie Munster, a teenage werewolf from the show Munsters Today. All I needed was jeans, t shirt, a jock jacket and lots and lots of hair gel. I taped my ears and put on the makeup. I was a bit of a tomboy (hard to imagine huh?) so it was easy. I remember Olin dressed as a pretty fairy and everyone else was ghosts, zombies, vampires and such. When the time came to go through the tunnel I was actually really scared, scared of the unknown, all this was so new to me, I remember being confused at the end of the tunnel, I was going to do a howl or something but I totally forgot because I was so overwhelmed by all the eyes on me when I came out from the dark.
Then came the time for the performance. I remember the 3 witches acting was awesome. The dance, I don't know, all I remembered was I had fun dancing with my dorm mates, all 30 of us, hehe, I think we pulled it off. There was food, and the decorations and costumes were fantastic. I remember Selindang Delima (Green) house did a Disney theme and they built a ship in the lounge. It was all so impressive and overwhelming the amount of effort and detail that was put into it. And all this was done by hand by the students. I was in awe and dumbstruck and couldn't wait until I was a fourth former and it would be our turn to plan the party.
But alas, the House Party was banned when I reached Form Four, under the basis of wastage and amidst complaints that students were paying to much attention to the parties than to their studies. So when it was our turn, we were only allowed to wear our school uniforms and had a normal makan-makan. Dissapointed, yeah. but at least I got to experience it.
It was my first year in Tunku Kurshiah College and I came to love it more and more. It was the people that made the memories and my 29 dorm mates in Canna, Block C Tun Fatimah made it all worthwhile, they were my first friends in high school and we shared so much more than just a cramped fire hazard space.
To (in bed location order), Alfieya, Sauce, Nogha, Juan, Murni, Effa, Wanie, Sheeda, Ddee, Luna, Dayang, Azah, Jaja, Zehan, Oya, Ilmi, Olin, Adel, Zureen, Nikky, Ipah, Irah, Aidah, Chikot, Chipook, Hani, Rabia, Eni and Enol..... thank you.
p/s: Any of you have the picture from that day? It'd be great if I could 'lampirkan' here, hehe...
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