Sunday, June 21, 2015

A father's lasting impact.

We had a very nice Father's Day lunch, hosted by Lynn and Mike. Fourteen-month-old Matt was his adorable self. And I like this enigmatic card that I got from them:

Moral: I've got to slow down so they can catch up. Happiness and prosperity should be in hand and within grasp!

I thought of my own late father, Khoo Ghee Tam. He had a great impact on me, especially when I was naughty.

But, seriously, I think my fascination with the English language came from him. He was an avid newspaper reader -- and I vividly recall being seated beside him at breakfast when I was a child; he with the morning newspaper in his hands.

He taught me to swim and to ride a bicycle, on the basis of "you are on your own after three days, buddy" (and there were no inflatable arm floats or bicycle trainer wheels then).

I have always have had a love affair with cars. I wonder if my father had anything to do with it, even though his utilitarian approach to them was that they were only meant to go from Point A to Point B. I remember excitedly going to Malayan Motors in Orchard Road with him to check out a second hand Ford Prefect, like this one here:

"Ford.prefect.arp.750pix" by Adrian Pingstone - Taken by Adrian Pingstone in June 2004 and released to the public domain.. Licensed under Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons -
He did not buy that car but he did go on to buy in his lifetime a Hillman Minx (which I never got to drive), a Morris Minor and a Fiat 600 (both of which I did get to drive eventually):

"Hillman Minx Special 4-D Saloon" by Lglswe - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons -

Finally, my father took me to several of the annual air shows at the then colonial Royal Air Force bases where I watched the aerial displays in awe and got close up with the static displays -- aircraft such as the Gloster Javelin, the Hawker Hunter and the English Electric Lightning, such as these ones below:

Since then, I have been an avid aircraft buff. Thank you, my dearest father.

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