Friday, 8 June 2018

Who's that elephant running along the corridor?

This was what my primary school looked like. Schools are no longer built like this. Signboard pointing to this building says MOE Adventure Training School but it doesn't look like this building is in use.
 Picture taken out of a bus window.
(May 2018).

MY old primary school, Serangoon Garden South School looks pretty much like this -- three storeys with nice long corridors for running up and down when waiting for the bell to ring. Teachers would pop their heads out of the saloon doors to ask who was that elephant outside? (The doors were made of wood and painted a light blue -- and yes, they did swing.)

And on the top floor, right at the end of the corridor, was Nature Corner. The most exciting thing here was a snake in a bottle. There were some dried up insects of course. But the snake in its murky bath was what we always wanted to see when we ran up to Nature Corner.

The canteen was on one end of the ground floor with long wooden benches for seats and long tables with tops protected by metal sheets for easy cleaning. My favourite food was a small bowl of fish ball noodles (plump yellow ones) laced in ketchup, with a small bowl of soup on the side. 

My other favourite food was mee siam -- the dry sort with very little gravy -- sold by an Indian who was so skinny that they said he was actually lifted up from the floor a few inches when strong wind blew.

Another favourite food was ice popsicles. After you finished it, you could use the stick to draw patterns on the sand patch near the canteen. This small patch was not intended as a play area. Somehow no grass was able to grow here -- so it became a sandy patch. But it was great for playing tit tat toe using ice cream sticks to draw the notch and crosses.

A grass field separated Serangoon Garden South School from Serangoon Garden North School. There was some invisible division I think. It was a thrill to cross this "line" -- as there were talks that if you were caught "on the other side" you would be hauled off to the principal of the "other side" and then you "will gena".