I Remember

3 07 2009

The other week I asked one of my students (Kyu-Yeon, henceforth to be known as The Q – that’s awsomeness right there) to track down an old (5+ years) KPOP tune for me. The tune was Lee Soo Young’s LaLaLa.

Well, The Q and her sidekick Minji (or is it the other way around?) are quite efficient when it comes to anything Korean (duh!), and so she found me a link, I loaded it up into my mp3 player, and had a listen to a song I havn’t heard in a looong time – right in the college library (I’m a student again, remember?).

And I remembered Nari, singing it in her pale yellow top and white skirt. I also remember the time she came to my classroom fighting back tears: she had accidentaly (who would do such a thing on purpose?) bashed her head on a fire extinguisher outside and was rather stunned by the sudden rush of pain usually associated with bashing one’s head on blunt, immovable objects with great force (and vice versa).

It was only my second year of teaching, and well, since I don’t get high school students with blunt force trauma in my class everyday, I was at a bit of a loss as to what to do. Rather innocently, I held-up two fingers and asked her to count them. She laughed (as best as one can when one’s head is ringing like a church bell).

As one memory leads to another, I then remembered Yoojin – one of the gentlest souls to ever grace my classroom. I think whoever composed her writeup in their batch yearbook was onto something when she called her a “Choi-doll” – she was always very soft-spoken and self-effacing, gently bopping her head when she found herself slow on the uptake. She helped me start The Orchestra, along with Abbie and Kristine and Yona and Yookyung – she was our first concertmaster.

She gave me kimchi – a whole bucketload of it (my attempts to store it on campus made me an instant celebrity). She called her violin kking-kkang because of the sound she made on it.

I remember Abbie, who is in Japan now. She had just about given-up on playing the violin, since she had been through a string of sub-par teachers (excellent players, but really bad teachers) before me. She was one of my tallest students, around 5’5″ or 5’6″, with nicely-tanned skin (a color we call moreno/morena) and wise-looking eyes.

During The Orchestra’s very first concert, she came onstage for her solo part in this gold and scarlet gown, all prettied-up (there goes good grammar) and beautiful, and I still remember the collective gasp from the audience.

I could actually go on and on with this, but I’m long on memories and short on time. All I want to say is that if your name is on this list, then know that today, I speak it in rememberance. If not, its probably because either you were never a student of mine to begin with, or you still are 😉

  • Nari Yim
  • Tanya Aritao
  • Kristine Borja
  • Seoyun Park
  • Taerang Park
  • Yookyung Lee
  • Yoojin Choi
  • Eric Wong
  • Benjamin Tolentino
  • Eunice Oquialda
  • Fahad Al-Khaldi
  • Kenzo Teves
  • She Ha Nul Hong
  • Monserrat Gonzales
  • Katrina Gonzales
  • Jonty Domingo
  • Katlyn de Mesa
  • Abiel Balon
  • Abigail Balon
  • Jen Miguel
  • Anna Calcetas
  • Charisse Cruz
  • Kathleen Hyun Kwak
  • James Oquialda
  • David Vidad
  • Juwon Park

I have this hankering feeling I’ve forgotten a few people, as is wont when it comes to this sort of thing. I apologize – frankly, I’m amazed I remember this many.

Wherever you are, whatever you might be doing, whatever you might have become, I remember, and thank God for you.




7 responses

25 07 2009
Nari Yim

ehem. I just googled my name and saw this.
I realized it is Sir Eigen who posted this!hehe 🙂
you do remember so many! you must have tons of gigabytes in your head!

25 07 2009

I do 😉

25 07 2009
Nari Yim

This is crazy…! I feeeeeel so touched! you remember everything…
Lalala…fire extinguisher…your fingers! wowowo
i just read the intro part just now… i miss my high school times…

25 07 2009

“Thank you, Google, for your serendipitously efficient search spiders, who have led Nari here.” Haha!

It’s good to hear from you again, Nari. I can guarantee you that even when I am old and gray, I will remember you when I hear LaLaLa. 🙂

Stay in touch 🙂

17 08 2009
eunice oquialda

hi sir:D
same with nari, i googled my self. my egotistic self lead me to your blog.:D

3 10 2009
Tin borja

Sir Eigen! Eunice led me to your blog. She was laughing about it the last time we saw each other (laughing in a reminiscing sort of way) and I just have to say I miss orchestra days too!!! (Really, I do! Haha.) Anyway, didn’t know you were back to be a being a student. That’s new news. Hehe. Let’s organize an orchestra date sometime! Orchestra bonding or homecoming whatever. Haha. See you when I see you, sir! Continue having a happy life! 🙂 Woot!

29 06 2012

I guess we should all thank Google for archiving this as I was – out of sheer curiosity – searched for my name online and like everyone else, found this. I am deeply blessed by what I have read. Thank you so much for the memories and everything you have taught me. For what it’s worth, I’d like you to know that I’m still playing the violin at our church. I would always remember that time back in high school when we played “Iris” with a full band. That would definitely be the highlight of all my memories with you. Again, thank you and I am so glad that I stumbled upon this. Definitely following! God bless you, Sir Eigen! 🙂

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