Memories In An Old Building.

by Patrick Liew on November 4, 2013

Monday, 4 November 2013, 12.46pm.

I happened to drive by Joo Avenue School, my good old primary school this afternoon.

The school is no longer in operation but the old building is still standing. Every brick and mortar carry beautiful memories of my childhood days.

Sitting at a coffee shop nearby and looking at the run-down structure, I couldn’t  help taking my mind back in time.

Faces appeared before me. They were familiar faces of teachers and school mates, people who were part of a beautiful time in my life.

I saw Mr Goh Ek Khoon again. Smiling and shouting at us to do one more somersault on a thin mattress.

And then there was Mr Lee Hock Seng, the most feared teacher in my class. Fear has now been replaced with affection because he taught me history and arts.

I can better appreciate life because of his lessons. Teachers like them left a piece of their heart in mine.

If you can read this love note, give thanks to the teachers in your life.

Joo Avenue was one of the original neighborhood schools. Most of us lived around the school and we spent many a lazy afternoon playing at the school compound and field.

Catching ‘longkang’ fish, playing with spider, kicking ‘chapteh,’ competing with ‘kuti kuti,’ flying fighting kites…

I’m not sure if the young people today understand what these games are about. If they don’t, it’s such a pity.

I wish they do because these games are part of our heritage.

These games can impart different perspectives of life. I don’t think any electronic game can do the same for us.

They were not online tools for escapism. They were real-life games that could help us develop a positive character and precious values.

They were cheap toys. Nonetheless, they brought immense joy and excitement to innocent kids – a long time ago.

Time perhaps did not fly. We moved on.

Somehow, in the evening of our life, we may return back to our roots.

Then we will realise we have never left in the first place. Memories live on in our heart and mind.

That’s what life is about.

Life is about helping others create beautiful memories. Memories that will outlast the ravages of time.


I hope this message will find a place in your heart.

By the way, I have also recorded other reflections.

Visit my Inspiration blog at

For my opinions on social affairs, please visit my Transformation blog at

Please visit my website,

Please read my reflections and continue to teach me.

Life is FUNtastic!


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