Speech by Dr. Hinton, 2007
I stayed with James and Nancy Tang for that week and was well looked after by them;
‘mollycoddled’ is a rather old-fashioned word to describe how well they treated me. Apart from
the major gathering of old students at the Richmond Hill community centre and a barbecue at
Jackie Chiu’s home, I met other QES alumni for lunch, tea, dinner, enjoyed the company of
some former colleagues – Kwok Wai Man, Pamela So, Ruth Wong, Kay Tam and Phyllis Chow –
and was able to spend some time with other friends. James and Nancy took me, via wineries,
to Niagara, not my first visit but always impressive, and also to the theatre to see Lord of the
Rings. Time passed all too quickly and when the week drew to a close I wished I was staying
longer. I would like to thank the QESOSAONT and particularly James and Nancy for all that
they did to make my visit so memorable, for the good company and the excellent food. I
apologise for not remembering the names of so many of you but my poor memory does not
mean that I was not pleased to meet you all.
From Toronto I flew to Vancouver for a rather longer stay. My hosts there were Miranda and
Paul Yeung who, like James and Nancy, took great care of me. Miranda is my Chinese ‘sister’
for, during her years of nursing training in England, she was a frequent visitor to my parents
whom she regarded as her English Mum and Dad. Soon a few 1966 graduates arrived from
elsewhere to join those living in Vancouver: Helen Cheng from HK, Elisha Lau from Australia,
Michael Chan and David Lai from the US, and Patrick Chow from Toronto. Sixteen of us,
including Walter and Helene Ng, enjoyed a noisy and excited lunch together and on the same
day the OSABC hosted an excellent and cheerful dinner at which old friendships were renewed
and new ones made.
On 20 May, the 1966 graduates and spouses, 15 of us, crossed to Vancouver Island where we
first visited Victoria. There I was able to spend a few hours with my friends Peter and Victoria
Chew. Peter was at one time chairman of the Canadian Club in Hong Kong which had for
several years gave scholarships to some of our students and he and his wife were guests of
honour at the Speech Day in 1967. We had remained close friends and it was a pleasure to see
them again. From Victoria we drove to the Sea Resort near Nanaimo where Kingsley Lo had a
condo and where he had rented others for us. For three enjoyable days we stayed there by the
sea, the fishers able to catch fish and crabs and collect oysters to supplement the huge amount
of food we had brought with us. Some went kayaking and all talked and ate to their hearts
content. On the evening when we were to hold a barbecue it started to rain but cooking
continued under umbrellas and the evening was not spoilt. Afterwards, the rain having
stopped, we went for a walk to aid our overloaded digestion and then had a campfire,
boisterous if not always very tuneful. From Nanaimo eight of us moved to Tufino on the west
coast of the island, the other unfortunates having to return to work. We enjoyed two days
there despite rain, at times very heavy, walking various trails and visiting beaches and, of
course, eating copiously and happily. Then on 25 May came the return to Vancouver after a
cheerful holiday in which we had become a very close-knit group.
Back in Vancouver Helen, Elisha, Miranda and I had a delicious lunch at the home of Walter and
Helene Ng, a beautiful and tranquil home, all of us thankful that QES had brought us together.
In the next few days I was happy to spend time with other friends and on 29 May, the evening
before I flew to London, Miranda gave a wonderful party, delicious food, excellent company and
cheerful singing, a happy end to a most enjoyable holiday.
QES has played a very important part in my life. I loved teaching there, conscious of a cheerful
and cooperative spirit in the school, and I have enjoyed the lasting and friendly contact I have
with my former students. It gives me tremendous pleasure to see you and to know about your
progress through life.