Gong Gong says

This is a posthumous blog of our father's (Lim Kok Ann) life. When our father passed away on 8 March 2003, he left behind an unpublished autobiography. We'd like to celebrate his life by sharing his autobiography through this blog.

"I have dredged these anecdotes from memory just to pass the time; if they amuse my grandchildren their purpose will have been served; if they provide any instruction, it will be a happy coincidence; that they are disjointed is probably to be expected.

Aurora was the name of my grandfather’s house in Kulangsu.   Amoy, where I spent the first five or six years of my life.   I still have vivid memories of events that took place when I was barely three years old.

Lim Kok Ann
October 1996"

Sunday, July 20, 2008

1: 21 Queen’s Scholar
To say I was surprised when I finished first of the combined Straits Settlements list is no exaggeration for though I knew I was tops in Maths, I also knew that the Arts students would be ahead of me in English Lit. and the Penang candidates were unknown quantities. It turned out that my marks for Maths were 40 marks ahead of the best aggregate marks for History and Geography obtained by the Arts students, a margin which they could not overtake in English Language and Literature, and I finished about 20 marks in front of the field. A real surprise was the success of Singapore’s Lee Lian Chye, an Arts students, at his first attempt. He must have been a whiz in English Literature.

I was eager to resume my dalliance with Rosie as soon as the Examinations were over, but found that her family had moved to a house named Titania on the beach at Siglap. I made the trip a few times and even went boating with Rosie once or twice, but it was too difficult an exercise. Rosie was too young to go to college when she had finished her Senior Cambridge, and had decided to repeat her final year at school. She then did so well that she topped the Senior Cambridge Examinations for giiis and won the Singapore Government Scholarship for girls of $100 (half that for boys). She also won a scholarship to Raffles College which was a matter of great pride for her father who generously donated the scholarship money back to the college for the benefit of some other student.

For Rosie, her Scholarship meant mostly one thing, that she would have to “live in”,according to the Scholarship rules, and she would be free from parental supervision. In due course, when college began in June 1939, Rosie was ensconced in Holne Chase in Grange Road, barely two kilometres from my house, and I was able to call on her frequently.


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