I’m a father of one beautiful daughter and all parents will agree, we just love to boast about our children. I’ve got something to share here and when I heard this story, it almost blew me off my wheel while driving.My girl’s eleven and she goes to this humble school where children are taught everything a normal school would except the size of the school is rather small and it’s sort of occupying a part of a premises that belongs to another host entity. But this story is not about the building.

Just this month, as we the adults got busy with the final quarter of the year with all the tasks laid before us, an unexpected event occurred in my daughter’s life. News came to our ears with tears rolling down her cheeks as she confided in my wife earlier about the incident. These two friends have been her towering buddies this year and they’ve forged a great friendship in just a few short months. They played together, laughed together, gossiped about one another (girls, what do you expect?) and even pranked on each other. Sometimes, they also advised about the best foot forward when one stumbles. The great camaraderie is a familiar tone in every great lasting friendship and I’m glad she’s having that kind of a moment at such an early age. But, this is not a story about them.

Great friendships, like any milestone epic, is not complete nor sweet if without challenges. At a time when the year is coming to a close, what could really happen right? I mean, for some of the more fortunate ones, it’s already time to look at the holidays and 2017. What then could really happen right? Well, something did – the two girls coming from the very same family stopped coming to school.

The shocking news rocked my daughter’s world like the collapse of the World Trade Centre. What had happened? Why did it happen? Why now? How? What? When? Trails of questions came streaming through and you wonder really why in the month of October when school year is about to end.

Your author here of course did a little Sherlock investigation and unearthed some painful truths behind the episode but to cut the long story short, their withdrawal was due to a financial calamity that nobody could help. But the story here is not about how they got into the deep end of the financial abyss and what they’re going to do about it.

Feeling lost and hopeless of not being able to see their friends again, the void left by the absent girls were pronounced, even among those who weren’t of BFF status. It’s like two buttons fell off from your shirt; you’d miss them even if they weren’t your favourite colour.

The story unfolded the next few days with the kids going about their daily classes, homework, and subconsciously and certainly without the parents nor the teachers’ knowledge, their growing thinking brains were actually ticking in the background for solutions to bring their friends back.

“We could all pool money together and bring them back to school.”

To that earnest intent and not necessarily in the exact words, a boy from their class rose up to speak of the rescue plan.

Among them, 11 young teens huddled together and divided among themselves to arrive at RM60 a head plus a teacher to bring their friends back to complete their 2016.

Such selfless pursuit for one unified vision is as noble as any inventor’s or activist’s heart to change the world. And here we are before us, 11 young children, without fear or favour, proposed a plan that bewildered even the hearts of the parents are truly admirable, if not respectable. Moved and inspired, the two girls were brought back for a full day at school to the cheerful smiles of those who committed to their cause. Their 2016 will now come to a sweet end thanks to the generous idea of modern day eureka.

When children huddle together, great things happen.

As an adult, it would be a good reason to lose myself at the wheel for such a magnanimous gesture from a bunch of primary school kids. How much can they afford? Faithfully, this is not about the wealth of their bank account nor of their parents but the nobility of their learned minds has emerged as the great champion. Their hearts, obviously at the right place. Adults, blind or deaf, you must take note.

As a parent, I’m proud of my princess. She even said she’ll foot her entire portion from her tiny purse just to see her friends by her side again. I couldn’t; and even if I was broke, I’d begged and stolen the money for her just so they could smile and hold hands again.

To the school principal and teachers, please hold your head high. Your ungodly hours and excruciating efforts to instill only the best have shown its harvest. Thank you for your hands, hearts and tears. God will be with them and He will continue to be with you.

To the young lads and lasses, thanks for being who you are, genuine, truthful and pure. You’ve inspired us, more so when your absent friends weren’t your familiar and local Malaysians. Bravo!

To me personally, this is my Story of The Year. None will come close! My utmost respect to you. Thank you!

 

Sincerely humbled,
Lea & Ivan Tan

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