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MICA(P) 076/04/2009

SAS

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Volume 7 December 2009

ourneys Singapore American School Alumni Magazine

Reunions in Washington, DC, Panama City, Las Vegas, and Houston Inside features: Bugis Street blues • Nomads of King’s Road SAS alumni bloggers • 37 years of Interim Semester

SAS Cover Vol 7

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Vol 7 December 2009 Editor Junia Baker Superintendent Brent Mutsch Director of Communications and Development Beth Gribbon Associate Director of Alumni Relations Lauren Thomas Designer Josephine Yu

SAS Journeys is published by the SAS Office of Communications and Development.

Front cover: Alumni from the 1960s and 1970s celebrated their July 17-19 reunion in Washington, D.C. by exploring Capitol Hill on Segways. See pages 40-59 for reunion stories and more photos. Back cover: Photos by Danielle Courtenay (10) of the Class of 2009.

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C o n t e n t s Superintendent Mutsch on connecting, reconnecting and interconnecting

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Interim Semester 1972-2009 Stories and pictures from an SAS program that continues to create indelible memories

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SAS Foundation Donations 2008-2009

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SAS Foundation builds strong base to give to students and to ensure financial secutity

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Why blog? Alumni Director Lauren Thomas and a cast of seven alumni explain why blogging is a great way to communicate with others

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Nomads of King’s Road

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Alum Spotlights: Exploring rural China; On the Appalachian Trail; Singing for supper; Interns in NYC and Bangladesh

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APL and the pumpkins

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Alums around Singapore College and Career Day; Homecoming 2009; Bob Dodge’s new book; Mr. Ho’s curry recipe

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Remembering Bugis Street

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Reunions, Reunions, Reunions

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Notes & Quotes

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Upcoming reunions

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Welcome Alumni

So long, Lauren. You will be hugely missed! Dear SAS Alumni, can work three ways — SAS can provide a welcoming atmosOne of the more painful aspects of expatriate life is sayphere and opportunities for returning alumni to reconnect ing goodbye, again and again, to a fast friend or colleague with the school; alumni can contribute to furthering the noble whom we were sure would never leave. Long-time expat, work of a world-class school; and alumni can draw on their passionate about the local scene, involved with a committed shared connection with SAS significant other and loving her and commit to helping one job and friends at SAS — by another in the wider world now you are likely know who after graduation. Regardless I’m talking about. Our muchof age or class year, whether admired alumni relations diyou were a student, a faculty rector, Lauren Thomas, is leavmember or a parent, the coning SAS and moving on to the nections with SAS and with next exciting chapter in her life. one another don’t end on She’s getting married and moving day. I feel lucky to moving to Kuala Lumpur but have been a part of these promises to stay connected to connections for five years, her SAS friends, many of and I’m sure I’ll carry them whom already live far from Sinwith me when I go.” gapore. Lauren will be hugely A self-proclaimed TCK, Beth Gribbon and Lauren Thomas missed by many of you who Lauren grew up in Kansas City, have established personal but never looked back when connections with her. Whether she helped you plan a reunion she headed overseas just out of college, first to London, then or connect to a job prospect, coaxed you into volunteering for to Singapore and now on to K.L. Career Day at the High School, snapped your photo and helped In Lauren’s words, “I was born and raised in Kansas City, you find your way to the caf to have a Mr. Ho lunch when you but over my five years at SAS, I’ve begun to think of myself as visited the campus, Lauren has touched the lives of many a third culture kid. Like any TCK, change and movement have alumni in positive and memorable ways. The passion, vision become major parts of my life, and I have lost track of friends and commitment she brought to the founding years of the as they move to the far reaches of the globe. Now it’s my turn SAS Alumni Office will have an impact far into the future. to change and move. Of course you can still find me on the There is a big hole to fill with her departure, but Lauren also alumni website because I am now an alum of SAS! leaves behind a solid foundation on which we will build. “It’s a bittersweet change for me, as I’m sure it was for all Lauren, from everyone who has worked with you over alumni when they left SAS. As you’ll see in this issue, though, the past five years at SAS, we wish you all the best in your new it’s not ‘goodbye,’ it’s ‘see you later.’ The myriad reunions this adventures. Stay well and stay connected. summer were a testament to the good feelings and connections that SAS inspires. We are all lucky to be a part of a strong school community that just keeps getting stronger. Beth Gribbon “Through my work in the alumni office, I’ve learned that Director of Communications and Development there is a lot of potential for you to use the SAS connection. It 3

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Letters & News

From Anokhi Kapasi (98): Journeys is getting more and more enjoyable to read. I love hearing about how everyone is doing and all of the neat experiences of the SAS alumni. I totally connected with the TCK story in the last issue. When I first came back to the U.S., all of my college friends kept saying, “There she goes — pulling the foreign card again,” when I didn’t know particular TV commercials, used weird words such as “air-con” and “hand phone” or rattled on about Interim Semester. Now when I get asked where I’m from, my friends help me out and say, “Oh, she’s from all over!”

those two ladies always knew what they were doing. More than being savvy about SAS, those two ladies had super pleasant personalities that gave visitors a joyful feeling about the school. For your archives, I’m attaching a snapshot of Boni, Teresa and me in 1972. From Tymra Suter (76): The official name of the Methodist Hostel on Farrer Road, where I stayed from 1970-73, was the Methodist-Lutheran Hostel. It was a co-oped effort with the Lutherans owning the building and the Methodists providing Mrs. Snead. I have fond memories of the hostel and was fortunate enough to visit with Mrs. Snead in 1990 when I lived in College Park, Georgia. It was like visiting a beloved relative. [Tymra is correct. It was the Methodist-Lutheran Hostel from 1964-1981, although the full name was rarely used, if ever. — Ed.]

From Tracy Meyer (SAS HS drama teacher): That is a stunning SAS Journeys! I have just gone through it cover to cover. It’s terrific. So beautifully laid out — great stories, photographs. Just loved it. From John Dankowski, former faculty: “It was so sad to read of Boni’s passing, for she was a most significant person at SAS. When Harry Fogie was principal and I was assistant principal in 1971-72, Boni and Teresa (Sim) were our secretaries and our primary pillars of support. There are surely some cliches about “secretaries running the school,” and indeed

From Susan Murray, alum parent and former Director of Development: I would like to congratulate you on a very interesting and professional alumni magazine. It is what we envisioned back when the Alumni Office was opened. It was heartwarming to see that so many people have been brought back to the school and made welcome. I would like to especially thank you for the fine article on Phil and Shelley DeFord. It’s nice to see them getting the thanks they so richly deserve from our community. Good job! From Mary Sears Easter (72): Thank you so much for putting me on the mailing list. I really enjoy the magazine and some of the past and present. My parents were Baptist missionaries to Singapore in the 60s, so I knew a lot of the kids in the hostels you noted in the article. It was good to see those pics. From Rachel Reed Merrell (93): The latest Journeys is awesome! I just finished pouring over it. Great job! Said by a non-SASer & non-expat: Journeys is lovely because it evokes a strong feeling of community. Said by Leigh Ann Widdon Harvey (87): Heath (74) and I really appreciate being so connected with SAS. Expressed by hundreds of alums: GREAT disappointment that Lauren Thomas is leaving the Alumni Office!

John Dankowski with Boni and Teresa in 1972. 4

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From the Superintendent

Staying connected By Superintendent Brent Mutsch

Perhaps the quality that best defines our world today is interconnectedness. I am inundated with invitations to join social/business networks and to “connect” with people, opportunities that have created amazing links that in some cases have taken me back to the earliest stages of my own life’s experience. My initial contacts were limited to relationships that were developed during my small-town high school experience. As excited as I was to reconnect with friends I hadn’t seen since my 20-year class reunion, the chances to reestablish communication with friends from my days on “the Hill” (while an undergraduate at St. Olaf), graduate school colleagues and early-career professional peers create an everwidening and rich network of friends and associates. Today, as alumni and friends of the Singapore American School, your choices for staying connected with touchstones in your own life experiences are wide and varied. We are dedicated through the efforts of the Alumni Office to assisting you to remain connected with your SAS experience in ways that you find meaningful and relevant. As an institution, we are continuing to develop a deeper understanding of the importance of creating the networks that enable SAS alumni to remain connected with one another. Although these connections clearly further the bonds of friendship created through the shared experience of time spent at SAS, we also hear from our alumni that connectivity has further opened the doors for professional opportunities. On occasion, a random SAS connection has created the context for further developing a new or renewed relationship that offers a variety of benefits. As we look toward the future of the Singapore American School, we’re well aware of the wonderful level of support many international schools receive from their alumni. This support takes on many different forms as alumni assume a variety of roles in the life of the school. Annually, a number of

Superintendent Mutsch and Alex Ettlin (08) unload pumpkins donated by APL for the annual fund-raising Pumpkin Patch.

alumni attend career day at the high school to share their personal insights specific to their professional preparation and work experience. Alumni graciously serve as points-ofcontact for families contemplating a move to Singapore and in need of affirmation as to the quality of education available in this part of the world. Alumni have told their friends about their experiences at SAS, contributing to its being the school of choice in Singapore. Alumni have also made financial contributions in support of SAS’s mission to deliver to each student an exemplary American educational experience with an international perspective. In 2009-2010, we will be reaching out to the SAS community as we take steps to initiate an annual giving campaign. This campaign, in collaboration with the Star Appeal Dinner so graciously supported by the Khoo Teck Puat Foundation, will provide a further opportunity for members of the SAS community to extend support to the programs integral to our vision of inspiring a passion for learning, encouraging emotional and intellectual vitality and empowering students with the confidence and courage to contribute to the global community and to achieve their dreams. I trust that as you reflect on your own experience at SAS, you will see the value in remaining connected with the broader SAS community. As alumni, you are an important part of the rich history of this school, and we hope that you remain “connected” to the SAS community in those ways that further enrich your lives.  5

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Stories of Interim Semester Interim Semester trips provide many SAS high schoolers with the most memorable and magical moments of their lives. They go to exotic locales, bond with one another and experience the lifestyles of other cultures. As a 90s student said, “It’s one thing to watch the National Geographic channel; it’s entirely different to live it!” Some trips are simply glorious, others challenge their comfort zones, but they all have never-to-be-forgotten moments. Interim Semester was started in 1972 “to enhance the standard curriculum by providing students with opportunities for cultural enrichment, experiences in the arts, adventure, travel and service to others.” Each year, the entire High School participates in programs ranging from trekking in Nepal, cycling in Australia and diving in Phuket to French language immersion. In-Singapore courses include visual arts, teaching and digital photography. 6

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The first Interim Semester house building team in 2001.

Teacher Michael Cox mixing cement.

Habitat for Humanity Interim Semester 2001-2009 By Michael Cox, High school science teacher 1981-present

Habitat for Humanity, a non-profit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry, is dedicated to eliminating poverty housing and homelessness in the world. Habitat is a “hand-up, not a hand-out,� as volunteers work alongside the needy families. While SAS students and teachers have built houses in the Philippines, Indonesia, Fiji, and several locations in Thailand, there has long been a special relationship with the Habitat community in Udon Thani, a city of about 400,000 in the northeastern region of Isan. During Christmas vacation in January 2000, a team of 24 students, teachers and parents

Over 500 Singapore American School students have gone through life-changing experiences with the Habitat for Humanity Interim Semester program. From the first SAS house built in 1998 in the Philippines to the most recent one built last February in Udon Thani, Thailand, some 120 Asian families have had their dreams of adequate housing fulfilled with help from SAS students. 8

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The end result was a house, built with love and care, where a part of me will always reside.

from SAS became the first-ever group to build homes with Habitat in Thailand. The two homes we built that year, the second and third homes built in the country, were the seeds that have now grown to over 3,760 dwellings for low-income Thai families. Habitat for Humanity became an Interim Semester program in 2001. As we return to Udon Thani each year with a new group of students, it is like coming home to a second family. Grateful homeowners, such as Sinuan and Chaowalit, with whom we have worked in the past, greet us. Tasani, the local

administrator, and her construction assistants, Chai and Nom, who have been with Habitat in Udon since the very beginning, and other staff members welcome each of us warmly and treat us like long-lost brothers and sisters. Nom, with his ever-present guitar, and Chai, with his pranks and his jokes, work beautifully with SAS students and are remembered long after the week with them has ended. Several pieces of construction equipment are marked with the recognition that they came from donations from the Singapore American School. Funds earned by the SAS Habi-

Mike Eppolito (03) and Thai friend.

Will Stanton (00) and Thai colleague.

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Jessica Chester (02) and Maya Hasan (02) building a cement block wall.

tat Campus Chapter at the Pumpkin Patch, County Fair and Food Fest are used each year for tools and construction equipment in Udon. An SAS elementary school bake sale project several years ago provided the funds for the two cement mixers that are in constant use by all Habitat volunteers in Udon Thani. We have gone to Udon Thani each year expecting to provide both financial help and physical labor but have returned to Singapore each time having gained far more from the homeowners and the local staff than we could have ever given. One student recently responded, “I have learned things that I cannot learn with just opened eyes; I have learned things with my heart.” Another said, “The families told us that we had answered their prayers and made their dream come true. That made me really happy. But the most important thing I learned was what it really means to have a servant’s attitude.” When we arrive on a worksite, footers, roof posts and a corrugated roof are already in place. With patient help from Chai and Nom and the homeowner families, we learn quickly how to mix concrete and mortar, how to lay cement blocks and how to make space for doors and windows. In less than two days, a group of 20 high school students, working along-

side their new Thai friends, can have the four walls of a single-story house in place and a concrete floor poured — all ready for the installation of windows and doors. Upon completion, each house is dedicated, and in a moving ceremony, we give the family symbolic keys to the house. In a speech that is always filled with tears, a family member expresses his or her gratitude. A recent SAS student recalled, “I could not begin to realize what an impact on my life this build was going to be and how I would not return to Singapore the same.” This condition is fondly called Habititis, and once one is infected, one

I not only helped build a house for a family in need; I also renovated the person within me. 10

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by the homeowners and the local Habitat staff. After food and music and dancing and speeches, the people from the Isan culture in Udon Thani conclude the celebration with a poignant ceremony. Each member of the families with whom we worked side-by-side presents a gift and then ties a simple white string around the wrist of each student. The string symbolizes profound thanksgiving and always comes with a blessing. Tradition suggests that the string be worn for three days, but those strings remain on the wrists of SAS students for weeks after their experience. “When the homeowners tied the white string around my wrist, symbolizing thanksgiving and friendship, I was sad to realize that I might never see them again. But I was also filled with a sense of true accomplishment, unlike anything I had ever felt before. It was one of the most meaningful and memorable things that I have ever done.” 

keeps wanting to volunteer for more. One student several years ago went off to a major U.S. university after a Habitat build, became immediately involved with Habitat on campus, spent the summer bicycling across the U.S. to raise funds for Habitat and became the president of the university chapter. Will Stanton (00), a member of the first Habitat group in Thailand, formed a business while in college to finance local Habitat projects. Lauren Sprigg (02) and Melissa Diaz-Viera (01) won Habitat for Humanity International Youth Awards for their work toward the eradication of poverty housing. Almost solely through Melissa’s work, United Airlines joined us as a partner on two builds in Udon in the summer of 2000. “Habitat is not just about building a house; it is about building character,” said another student. After spending a week riding to the Habitat worksite in the back of a lorry, a student reflected, “Every morning [in Singapore] I see people in the back of trucks on their way to begin a day of construction. And even though I watch them through the windows of my school bus, I now feel a real sense of kinship with them.” At the end of the week, an appreciation dinner is hosted

Cox has led Habitat teams to the Philippines, Indonesia and Thailand since 1999. 2010 will be his 15th Habitat build and 11th visit to Udon Thani.

Buses, bugs and leeches

Arrested for sacrilege

By Martha Donaldson Daniels (79)

By Eileen Van Kirk Umbehr (76)

I had the privilege of going on two fantastic Interim Semester trips. In 1977, I went on the Jakarta/Jojakarta/Bali trip with about 30 other people. We saw many wonderful things but spent a lot of time sitting on buses. Toward the end of the trip, in an act of rebellion, we took off without permission and headed for Kuta Beach. Not long after, our chaperones showed up and “escorted” us back to the hotel. In 1978, I went to Taman Negara, a tropical rain forest in Malaysia. The sites we saw and events we participated in were incredible. We spent one night in a tree house lookout and saw tapirs come out to feed in the middle of the night. I also saw the biggest insects I have EVER seen in my life, and we all experienced the leeches! I seem to remember that we annoyed our chaperones on that trip too!

In 1974, I was one of the “Sukothai Six” — we were arrested in Bangkok for sitting on a Buddha at the ruins of Sukothai. In our defense, we certainly recognized the sacredness of the golden Buddhas at the temples we visited, but this Buddha was out in the middle of an open field in ruins, with pieces broken off. The police confiscated everyone’s film and were able to identify the culprits after they developed the pictures. We six were arrested, fingerprinted and detained in a hotel while the rest of our classmates returned to Singapore. I recall one newspaper editorial in the local paper that asked, “What would Buddha have done?” The writer felt Buddha would have forgiven our ignorance. Thankfully, the judge at our court hearing agreed, and we were set free!

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Interim Semester 2008 in harshly authentic Tibet

Students and teachers outside the 500-year-old Sera Monastery in Lhasa engaged in a philosophical debate.

Within a period of seven days, I and 19 peers from the junior class, led by teachers Mark Devine and Tico Oms, glimpsed a reality that was in stark contrast to our lives and experiences. Traveling between the cities of Tsedang, Gyangtse, Xigatse and Lhasa, our senses were constantly overwhelmed. Be it the pungent smell of yak butter candles and the colorful monasteries or long drives highlighted by sightings of glaciers, frozen lakes and steep mountains rising without warning out of plateaus or the sensation of thin, dry air in our lungs, we returned to Singapore exhausted by the sheer energy of all we had encountered. Our last day in Tibet captures the essence of this trip. We woke early and dressed for the bitter cold in preparation for a hike that was to start after a short bus ride through Lhasa’s

By Helen P. Knight (09) For many, allusions to Tibet conjures notions of Brad Pitt scaling the Himalayas and teaching a young Dalai Lama or of Birkenstock-shod, dreadlocked vegetarians seeking spirituality with “Free Tibet” patches on their burlap backpacks or a vague recollection that Richard Gere is somehow involved. The irony of these Hollywood impressions is that the real Tibet is the opposite extreme of this fluff and drama: it is harshly authentic in all ways, starting with a physical beauty that is visually overpowering. It is a place where life is one of manifold hardships that outsiders can only imagine. It is a place where devotion to religion and religion as a way of life are unparalleled. 12

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2008 Interim Semester students in front of Potala Palace in Lhasa. The palace was the chief residence of the Dalai Lama until 1959 and is now a museum.

their hands together to emphasize important points and often shouted with enthusiasm. The day ended with a return visit to the Jokhang Temple, one of Tibet’s most holy sites, situated in the center of Lhasa. My favorite part of this experience was seeing the faces of Tibetans peering at us as we returned their glances with equal curiosity. Many of these pilgrims had traveled for months and even years to reach this temple, prostrating themselves on the ground with each step they took on their journey.

dusty streets. What would have been an easy walk at sea level was a difficult ascent because of the high altitude as we slowly made our way up to a local monastery. The effort was well worth it, however, when we found ourselves in a room of monks chanting their morning prayers. The roof of their building afforded a view of the Potala Palace, the Dalai Lama’s former residence, rising above the city. Part of our group chose to stay at the monastery, while others pushed forward to another monastery higher up the face of the mountain. Before long, we descended into a ravine, following a path above which were strung thousands of prayer flags, which Tibetans leave in sacred places for blessings. When we reached the second monastery, we were touched by the hospitality of an elderly monk who knew no English but welcomed us warmly. He offered us yak butter tea and cookies, but we were pressed for time and had to decline. On the way back, after rejoining our group, we saw a sky burial in the distance (Tibetans honor their dead by leaving them for vultures) and later several grazing yak. That afternoon, we visited the 500-year-old Sera Monastery, and when we arrived, we found the monks engaged in a “debate.” The courtyard outside the main temple was awash with the maroon color of the monks’ robes as they watched their teachers question their colleagues on difficult philosophical topics. Those who were being interrogated clapped

Lucky Star Orphans Though there is so much more I can describe, one particular afternoon was such a highlight than it cannot go unmentioned. In Singapore, we had collected shoeboxes of toys and school supplies, which we distributed to the children at the Lucky Star Orphanage upon our arrival in Lhasa. As we showed them each of the things we had brought, they appeared almost shell-shocked because they had never really had their own possessions. Quickly, however, they were giddy with excitement and played with us without their earlier inhibitions. Coming into such close exchange with Tibetans, I think all of us were given yet another experience from which to approach the implications of the political situation in Tibet, a theme that we considered individually throughout our journey and afterward.

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Each and every SAS Interim trip is a unique opportunity. In the four trips I have taken, I have been challenged in myriad ways and returned to Singapore having learned much. What was gained from Interim in Tibet? Tibet left me a little more insightful, more eager than ever to travel the world and learn and very thankful to be able to experience such journeys and “once in a lifetime” opportunities. 

Ashley Lau (09), Helen Knight (09) and Lindsay Henson (09) on Interim Semester in Tibet, which left them “a little more insightful and a little more eager to travel the world.”

Almost kidnapped in Delhi

Thai and Malay cultures By Jane North Lyon (77) I went on two very memorable Interim trips. In 1975, I went to Thailand by train. We watched elephants pull logs from the forest (I still have the hand-carved “elephant bell” that I bought off the handler — like a cow bell but much bigger!), saw hand-looming in Chiang-Mai and bought “antiques” in a hill-top poppy-growing village. (The “antiques” were just replicas that were buried in dirt and dusted off to look old.) We had satay-eating contests at the food stalls and ate at local places the entire time, except for the very special outing to a Pizza Hut in Bangkok ... where I got food poisoning! On the trip home, we spent a couple of nights at a beautiful beach resort and took great delight in ordering banana splits from room service! My senior year, I went on “Kampong Malaysia,” led by Chekgu, our beloved Malay teacher. Rural village life was quite a culture shock — sleeping on straw mats on the floor, eating with our fingers while squatting, an over-the-creek latrine and an outdoor community bath. I remember the whole village gathering around the one television set to watch a John Denver concert and singing “Rocky Mountain High” with the Malaysians. We experienced firsthand tapping rubber from a tree and working in a rice padi and had a lesson in Malaysian martial arts. We all fell in love with our very gracious host families.

By Michelle Carey Miller (85) Laurey McIntosh (84) and I went to India with LB (Vice Principal Charles Longbottom). What memories ... a truly awesome experience. Anyway, one day we were searching for silver jewelry in New Delhi, and we met a man at who said he knew just where to go. Something about this man didn’t jive with me, but following Laurey’s lead, I hopped into a taxi with them. As we were headed out of the city, my imagination got the better of me, and we just happened to see LB passing us in another taxi. I grabbed Laurey by the hand and screamed for LB to stop as we raced to safety. We later found out that this man was known by the local authorities for selling people on the black market. The Taj Mahal was absolutely awesome; the shopping, not so great.

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SAS Foundation Donations 2008-2009 1956 Circle S$50,000 and above Hae Jin & Young Rim Lee • SAS Parent Teacher Association

Eagle Circle S$20,000-S$49,999 Khoo Teck Puat Foundation • Hano Maeloa & Monita Harianto & Sukma Widjaja Stephen Riady & Shincee Leonardi

Tiger Circle S$10,000-S$19,999 William & Jamie Amelio • Steven Cheng & Sylvia Liu • Cisco Systems • Crocs Asia Pte Ltd • DBS Bank Ltd Michael & Shelly Dee • Michael & Eva DeNoma • GETCO Asia Pte Ltd • William & Lois Lydens Brent & Maggie Mutsch • Y.S. & Suzie Nam • Mark Nelson & Margrit Benton • Janie Ooi • Edan & Bon Park • Brent & Sandra Smith • Pei Ling Tan & Yullies Irawan • Ee Lim & Sofina Wee • Xu Quan & Xue Qiong Yao

Gecko Circle S$5,000-S$9,999 Joe & Mae Anderson • Ragnar & Joey Horn • Lim Meng Keng Department Store Soejono & Fae Varinata • Phillip & Sandra Widjaja • Raymond & Kaori Zage • David Zemans & Catherine Poyen

Orchid Circle S$1,000-S$4,999 Ravi & Sunanda Agarwal • Jonathan & Jessika Auerbach • Richard & Ashley Barry • Masoud & Maria Bassiri Bart & Valerie Broadman • Dong Woo Chang & Ah Jung Lee • Jenny Q L Chiam • Mike & Kendall Connors Michael & Grace Fan • Edward & Rachel Farrell • Ed & Noa Gilbreath • Scott & Valerie Graddy • Jim & Beth Gribbon Bryan & Christine Henning • Kirk & Janice Hulse • Scott & Yun Joung Jung • Gerd Keim & Rini Sumardi Devin Kimble & Amy Sittler • Lands’ End Inc • Ayaz & Shamina Lavingia • Joo Bae & Eun Hee Lee • Shahryar Mahbub & Shazia Khawaja • Rudy & Andrea Muller • Masatsugu & Yuki Otani • Neil & Mika Parekh • Vijay & Sujata Parekh • Deepa Pasumarty Adrian & Susan Peh • Cameron Poetzcher & Varsha Rao • Raj & Mary Rajkumar • Namuh & Younsoo Rhee • Stephen Russell & Stephanie Morgan-Russell • Iwan Sarjono & Ingrid Prasatya • William & Martha Scarborough • Garth & Roxana Sheldon Abidinsyah & Bonita Siregar • Helman Sitohang & Maria Praptanti • Gerry & Michelle Smith • In Jun Song & Joo Hyun Lee Lawrence & Jane Sperling • Chris Tan & Chantal Wong • Steven & Asa Tucker • Harrison & Sheila Wang • Jun Won & Yoon Hee Choi • Chiu Man Wong & Maria Warner Wong • Kwan Nga & Rosa Wong • Shue Hai Yee & Iris Liew

Traveler’s Palm Circle S$100-S$999 Anonymous • Mark & Marianne Boyer • Yeow Ming Choo & Angelina Zheng • Philip & Daywen Chu • Marian Graham Gary & Sally Greene • David Hoss • Geri Johnson • Stanley & Cari Koster • Marc & Heidi L’Heureux • Rajkumar Narayanan & Jaya Rajkumar • Hanatha & Louise Perdana • Tom & Heather Presnail • Ken Schunk • Tiri & Susan Shaw • William & Marybeth Shay • Edmund Sim & Yu Lin Wee • Gregory Smith • Walter & Patti Szopiak • Wilbert & Amy Young • Stephanie Zarikow

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SAS Foundation

SAS boasts a volunteer spirit rivaled by none By Bon Park, Co-chair, School Board Advancement Committee and Beth Gribbon, Director of Communications and Development Since the school opened its doors in 1956, parents have supported their children’s education by volunteering time and raising money. The PTA, Booster Club and Arts Council have provided the lion’s share of the volunteer and fund-raising initiatives over the years. The supportive engagement of these parents contributes enormously to making SAS such a special place. The school’s Development Office, established to spearhead fund-raising initiatives, is relatively new but has been successful in engaging the generosity of the SAS community. As the office celebrates its fifth anniversary this year and looks toward the future, it is abundantly clear that the support of parents has been significant. Over the past four years, more than $2 million has been raised by the Development Office in support of annual initiatives and the long term Endowment Fund. Additionally, the SAS community is now the beneficiary of the Riady Performing Arts Center, thanks to the $4 million donation made by the Stephen Riady family. We are proud of our success and pleased by the support from parent and corporate donors. In addition, a number of SAS alumni have made contributions, and we look to forward to increased support from alumni in the future. The Development Office has also worked to qualify for

The Riady Performing Arts Center (top) and the Khoo Teck Puat Library (above) were the result of generous donations to the school.

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SAS Foundation Institution of Public Character (IPC) status for the SAS Foundation under Singapore law. Having achieved that goal in June, donations made in Singapore dollars are now eligible for exemption from Singapore income tax. A similar tax benefit is available for U.S. dollar donations made to our U.S. foundation, which is a U.S. 501 (c) (3) organization. Such tax benefits enhance the SAS Foundation’s ability to attract donors. Recognizing the increasing importance of developing additional sources of revenue to meet increasing costs at the school, the Board of Governors recently established an Advancement Committee. This committee has developed policies for governance of the school’s development initiatives and will continue to provide strategic direction for fundraising programs. The economic turmoil in the world economy created an uncertain fund-raising environment during the 2008-2009 school year. Nevertheless, the Development Office, in partnership with the Advancement Committee and the SAS community, raised nearly $700,000, a substantial achievement, allowing the school to fund programs and initiatives similar to those in past years and to increase the funds available for financial aid. Although a substantial portion of the funds goes to support programs and financial aid for the coming school year, a sizeable portion is placed in the Endowment Fund, helping to secure the future of SAS. In addition, $335,000 donated by the PTA will be used to provide funding for requests made through the divisions.

Students with award-winning author David Schwartz, who visited in April 09. Funds from the SAS Foundation support Visiting Author and Community Library programs.

Please consider donating to the SAS Foundation

Allocations of the over $1 million raised in 2008-2009 Academic Programs Athletic Programs Community Service Programs Extracurricular Programs Financial Assistance Endowment PTA Fund Spending

Checks in Singapore and U.S. dollars should be made payable to SAS Foundation. On the alumni or SAS website, go to “Giving to SAS” to read more about the SAS Foundation and making a donation. Kindly download and fill out the donation form and mail it with your donation check to:

S$55,000 S$28,500 S$60,000 S$32,500 S$222,000 S$293,000 S$335,000

Office of Communications and Development Singapore American School 40 Woodlands Street 41 Singapore 738547

SAS is proud of its many accomplishments over the years and is working hard to ensure that it meets the key challenges of its future in order to secure an exemplary education, the hallmark of SAS, for today’s students and for those of tomorrow. The Development Office and the Advancement Committee, grateful for the extraordinary generosity of the SAS community over the past years, are excited by the prospect of identifying creative and sustainable ways to develop additional sources of revenue for the school. 

All donations in Singapore and U.S. dollars are eligible for tax benefits in the respective countries through our U.S. and Singapore foundations. E-mail alumni@sas.edu.sg for more information.

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Ee Chien’s blog is an inside look at his life as a Mormon missionary.

Jordan and Megan blog to create a book of memories of their year in China.

Why blog ? By Lauren Thomas and a cast of SAS alums The Alumni Office has been e-mailing back and forth with alumni parent and former faculty Karen Studebaker this summer. She attended the Class of 79’s 30-year reunion in Houston in July and describes below the strong connection the alums had despite the slow forms of communication between Asia and the U.S. in the 1970s.

There was a bonding and a love among the kids in Houston, saying, “No one could ever understand this if they didn’t live it.” Wish you could have been there to get the feel for it. You’d have fun seeing how the kids try to remember one another. It’s a huge network we’ve tried to maintain. The 1970s were a unique time when the community/school/expats had to rely on one another as so much was unavailable in the way of goods, services, medical care — no cell phones, no computers and no websites. With the advent of the Internet, e-mail, even reality TV, young alums may have a hard time imagining life without instant messaging and Facebook, where they can share their daily musings with far-off friends and family. Over 300 of them have gone a step further and share in the form of blogs. If you haven’t had the chance to investigate the world of blogging, the following stories are an introduction to a whole new world. 18

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Shenanigans: bethmorrissey.wordpress.com By Beth Stefanik Morrissey (98)

life has changed since my first blog post and all for the better!

I began blogging in 2006, right after I acquired Irish citizenship. I’d already lived in Dublin for four years and was getting really tired of sending out mass e-mails full of pictures and the highlights of my life in Europe. I wanted a way to show family and friends what daily life was like in Dublin, and blogging seemed to be the best way to do it. Shenanigans has become a place where I can share the mundane, the sublime and the ridiculous. I’ve made many new friends within the blogging community, and after a tour guide editor found me and commissioned some work, I realized that I could make a career out of writing. I became a full time freelance writer in 2007 and have launched a writing blog, Hell or High Water, hellorhighwaterwriter.blogspot.com. As I’ve grown more comfortable writing for the web, I’ve started to offer writing and blogging workshops in Dublin and have been blogging professionally for a variety of clients. My entire

Sharing: www.HickmannFamily.us By Joe Hickman, husband of former teacher Geri Hickman and father of Alexis (01) and JR (98)

Lily writes about her adventures as a stay-at-home mom. Photo by Brian Bobila.

Having lived in Asia for 25 years we found it difficult to keep up with others via Christmas cards and the odd letter. We decided that we needed an easier way to keep family and friends updated on what was happening in our lives, so we started the Hickman Family website in the late 90s. Over the years we have posted pictures and and stories about our ups and downs along with the times we laugh at others and ourselves. When Gerri was fighting cancer, we found it very helpful to write about what she was experiencing and learn from others what they were going through. The outpouring of support we received from around the world was very therapeutic, not only while Gerri was fighting cancer but for JR, Alexis and me after we lost her. I will not be still: elderchua.blogspot.com By Ee Chien Chua (07) I started this blog when I started my mission in 2008. I decided to blog about my experiences so that my friends, LDS and non-LDS alike, could see what a mission is like for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Along with that, it also serves as a kind of personal journal that I can look back on and have as a keepsake. Each week essentially includes a synopsis the week, along with my thoughts, feelings and insights into the things that I do and what I have learned. I suppose that it’s a good inside look at the life of a Mormon missionary. The reason: thereasoniblog.com By Chris Bartelski (00) For a long time I wanted nothing to do with photography. My wife had been shooting weddings for a long time, and I’d helped her a little bit, but mostly I stuck to running sound. After a few years working opposing schedules, I caved in and decided to join her. Once I jumped into the business, I was amazed by how many photographers blog, as well as have websites. At first it didn’t make sense to me why a photographer would have both, but then I figured it out. A website is more like a business card or a portfolio — it isn’t updated that often. But a blog is alive. It’s a way to show clients that my business is thriving. Our blog now receives a few hundred people who stop by every day just to see what’s going on. Most of our posts are photos from gigs, but sometimes I’ll

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add in random stuff — anything to make people feel like they know me. There are thousands of people who take great pictures, but there is only one chris + allie. Our photography skills get us in the door, but people hire our personality, our perspective and our humor. A constantly updated blog builds brand loyalty, trust and buzz. In a struggling economy and the large influx of “Uncle Bob and his hobby camera shooting a wedding for free,” we’ve created something no one else has. Our blog is the main vehicle to promote the only thing worth hiring us over the other guy ... Allie and me. Book of memories: www.bloemsinchina.blogspot.com By Jordan Bloem (04) and Megan Waugh Bloem (04) After making a momentous, life-altering decision to move to China for a year, Megan and I were glad our next decision was an easy one: to start a blog about our year. Our blog serves two purposes. First, rather than emailing all our friends and family about our latest cultural faux pas or weekend exploration, the blog allows a central location for anyone wanting a peek into our lives. The reach has been broader than we anticipated, and we have been pleased to hear from several prospective teachers in China that reading our blog has helped inform their decision on whether or not to come to China. Second, we write the blog for us. A few years ago, my brother Michael (00) blogged about his experiences with economic development and mission work in Nigeria, and has since printed and bound his blog as a yearbook of sorts. Just as our SAS Interim Semester teachers told us about those journals we were forced to write at the end of each day of kayaking or rock climbing, in 10 years we hope to be able to pull out a transcript of our blog and reminisce.

All about art: www.creativechick.com By Susan Robin Sorrell (82) I started blogging back in 2004, when a friend of mine told me about this new way to market your work, your passions and your hobbies in a form that was inexpensive and would reach thousands of people. When I blog, it is usually about my artwork, other artists or my online art classes. It is just an extension of my website, but I have control over it and can change the information on it easily. I also have a blog for my art studio, www.littlehouseartstudios.com. I think these blogs have really exposed my artwork to people who have no idea what fiber/textile art is and can make comments about my posts, which is great because I love the feedback! My life at home: www.atribecalledchan.com By Lily Liu Chan (94) I originally started my blog as a way to share information with friends and family about my two great passions: knitting and my beloved pug, Oliver. Now, four years, a wedding, a new home, a baby and a career change later, my passions — and therefore, my blog — have changed. I now write mainly about my adventures as a stay-at-home mom. I look at each blog post as a vignette, a chance to turn what may otherwise be a mundane occurrence or boring day into something amusing that others can relate to. One post may discuss the politics of mommy cliques at the neighborhood park. Another post might detail my latest foray in fashion design. And yet another post might be a reflection on my previous life before I had children. The topics change, but the cast of characters stays pretty much the same: my 15-month-old son Benjamin, my husband Vince and of course, my loyal pug, Oliver. 

Our photography skills get us in the door, but people hire our personality, our perspective and our humor. A constantly updated blog builds brand loyalty, trust and buzz.

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Nomads of King’s Road By Francesco Zargani (86)

and open windows. Seniors and juniors sat in the back, freshmen at the front. We’d gather at the Pandan Valley condominium, one of the pick-up points. The mothers would peek through the window at us, in whites and blues. How many bus rides did I take during four unforgettable years? Hundreds, but what I find humorous now is that not once during those banal bus rides did I ever think that decades later I would reminisce fondly about them! After the bus stopped at the Ridgewood condominium, the only other large residential complex in Ulu Pandan at the time, it would drive back along Holland Road until it veered left onto Farrer Road. It was a simple intersection at the time, not the elevated overpass junction it is today. The driver would shift through the gears, and I can still hear the brutal fatigue of the engine as it complained about hauling 20-odd maniacs engaged in a barrage of sophomoric conversation.

There are pretty little villas where half our campus used to be on King’s Road (the Ulu Pandan half is now a local school). When you arrive, there is a street sign with “King’s Road” on it, placed right where the uphill driveway used to be, leading up to the old library. Only the air is the same. The humidity wraps itself around me, and I find myself sweating exactly as I did more than 20 years ago. Only I am now in my forties, and even sweating feels more tiring now than it did when I was a teenager. The gradient of the hill is the same, but all else is unrecognizable. It is sufficient to be there though, to imagine buses driving up the hill and Mr. Gomez directing the sparse traffic before the buses arrive. The SAS buses back then were nothing like today’s — they were loud, hot contraptions of steel 21

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days to Fridays, all ebullient with the semi-ignorant optimism of a youth spent as expatriates: we were never really from there, but we were never really from home either. We were nomads whose commonality was in the tents we pitched from venture to venture, whose threads intertwined and met and departed as our journeys brought us close to a place remote to most of us but which — to this day in our diaspora — is the one indelible homeroom of our lives. The fragile veil of separation between teachers and students, administrators and administered led to fondly remembered friendships as the years, with their voracious inevitability, shuffled us along oceans and into new homes. Now we see even more how we, the SASers of King’s Road, were all a family back then and now more so; it is the testament of our bond how close we all are — teachers and students, we were all teachers and we were all students.

From Farrer Road, it veered left once again onto Empress Road, where the food stalls used to be, just a minute or two away from school. Farrer was more than the name of a road or food stalls; it was a symbol of early socializing and evenings spent loudly proclaiming a maturity still chained by innocence. The downhill of Empress Road is the last bit reminiscent of the old area. Around it everything has changed. You still turn right onto King’s Road, but it’s all new sights as your eyes scan feverishly for a reminder of those days. We lived a million years in a precious few, we — the students of a school that was an island in and of itself — King’s Road and the SAS Eagle painted on the arts and theater center, the steps in front of the Senior Tree the epicenter of a campus that resonated of colonial times. We paraded from class to class, activity to activity, lunch and breaks and Mon-

“If you close your eyes and feel the heat of Singapore embracing you once again, you can still see us all in white and blue, running with the freedom of youth, dancing lightly under the branches of our Senior Tree.”

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In our diaspora, the King’s Road campus remains the one indelible homeroom of our lives

Visiting Woodlands recently, I was ushered into the new high school library: new for me obviously, thousands of fellow nomads have already walked through its doors and pored over its books. Right when I entered, in a glass case as a repository to mementos gone by was a picture of Mr. Gomez. The smile and eyes, looking at me from the single dimension of a photograph, reached out with the same warmth and reality of more than 20 years ago and afforded me the same gentle hospitality. Mr. Gomez, our uniformed guard during times so different, who was there every day, every morning and afternoon. I can see still see his smile, his head gently tilted whenever he said hello. He did so ever graciously, and not once did I stop and ask him a little more about his family or about his work. I am irritated with myself that I never did. We are amassed on this canvas of our lives and rarely do we spend enough time looking and understanding each character in this one and only one scene; we often study and know the principals but forget all those great gregarious figures who may be a bit removed from the center, preciously breathing life in the shadows. Somewhere in a book or on the web in this new universe of information, I came upon a picture taken from the second floor of our old social studies and history classes, facing the Senior Tree. The picture is from 1988, and there are no people in it, just a marvelous snapshot of one instant in time; it was taken two years after I left, yet it could well have been a glimpse from my own eyes. Looking through that picture I imagine myself, in those days already living elsewhere thousands of miles away, and how I was still there. For we all are still there, the nomads of King’s Road. There are new villas on the old site, and a pretty new school, but if you close your eyes and feel the heat of Singapore embracing you once again, you can still see us all in white and blue, running with the freedom of youth, dancing lightly under the branches of our Senior Tree. 

The then-outdoor cafeteria in those long-gone days was run by Mr. Ho, father of today’s SAS caterers, high school Mr. Ho and middle school Mr. Hoe.

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Alum Spotlight

Exploring a remote province in western China

Construction was going on everywhere. Here heavy machinery lies in wait below fort-like Tibetan homes.

In one of the monasteries, the monks were about my age and they let me sit in and observe their timeless ritual.

By Luke Charles Ettensperger (07)

means master and is the proper way to address an adult male, similar to saying “uncle” in Singapore. He had years of experience as a truck driver hauling lumber from the now deforested hillsides of Sichuan. Thanks to him I got to practice driving a stick-shift along a mountain road that was under construction. It was hard to focus between what he was saying to me in Chinese, changing gears at the right time and dodging heavy machinery. I learned quickly; otherwise we would have quite possibly fallen into the raging river below. Along with the breathtaking scenery there was a lot of

“Tashi Delek!” or “Hello and may you have much luck and many blessings” is a greeting we used throughout our travels in Sichuan province this summer. This remote part of western China used to be part of the Kingdom of Tibet. There are no guide books on this untamed part of China. Our journey started in Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province, where my mother and I hired a car and driver to take us into the unknown. His name was Ye Shi Fu. “Shi fu” 24

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Alum Spotlight construction. New roads and houses were replacing those destroyed in last year’s earthquake, which left 5 million people homeless. The architecture of these homes gradually changed from grey concrete slabs to ornate wood and stone structures waving prayer flags. All of the construction sites had one thing in common — no safety measures. Human life is less important than a building in China. In every major town there was an army base and countless police stations to ensure the peace. The police monitored our movements throughout the region by the hotels we stayed in and at numerous checkpoints. Many Buddhist Tibetans live in Sichuan, and they often protest against Chinese rule and religious restrictions. Still, it seemed strange to see all of this in an area inhabited mainly by farmers, nomadic ethnic minorities and monks. We saw several new monasteries as well as a nunnery that was being built by the nuns. Many of the statues inside these places were brand new, and pictures of the Dalai Lama were on display. Although Mao said “religion is poison,” it seems to be thriving in Sichuan. In the village of Ba Mei a large crowd gathered to hear a famous lama chant. Different from a Christian sermon, the focus of a Buddhist chant is endless reciting of verse, which can go on for hours, sinking into your unconsciousness. Among the crowd were several Chinese visitors who had come from Beijing to stay with the Lama Lung Duo who lived there. They introduced us to him, and he invited us to stay the night. The next morning he blessed us by blowing on the tops of our heads. This simple yet symbolic gesture blows away negativity in the mind. The Lama asked about our travel plans and advised us to be circumspect at our next destination, the city of Se Da. Se Da is a monastic city. Home to several thousand monks and nuns, it is one of the largest centers of Buddhist learning in the world. We stayed in a town outside the city, which had an ominous feeling. Shopkeepers were hesitant to sell to us. Leather-clad youths shouted derogatory “hellos,” and the monks looked like thugs. It seems there is resentment toward foreigners, including the Chinese, even though this attitude contrasts with Buddhist ideals. The next morning we were refused entry to the holy city and had to consult with the police chief who looked like a mob boss. He agreed to escort us as long as we did not take pictures or leave the car. As we went around a turn, the city appeared before us. Tucked away in a valley was a sprawling network of single story homes, temples and schools. We caught glimpses of red and brown robed figures holding prayer beads, chanting and going to class. It was incredible to think that all the en-

ergy in the city was dedicated to spiritual purposes. As we traveled, we learned a bit about the people who lived in the region and their Chinese/Tibetan cultures. Everyone we met had a story to tell, and they brought a personal dimension to what we saw. One Tibetan matron invited us into her home and served us yak butter tea, but communication was difficult because neither of us spoke Mandarin well. Once we gave a ride to a young Tibetan monk. As we talked to him we soon realized he did not understand us. This annoyed our Chinese driver who yelled at him, “Why can’t you speak Chinese? You live in China!” Another hitchhiker was also an ethnic minority, a pretty young woman who was a yak herder. She said that her father was trying to make her marry a man she did not want. She inquired about my marital status and when she found out I was single, asked if I knew anything about raising animals. The journey itself was not easy. Frequently we were delayed by landslides and construction. We were pushed past our comfort zone, but the challenges made the trip all the more rewarding. We had to learn things on the go and trust our instincts. We went there seeking adventure and spirituality. We were transformed from pampered wandering tourists to slightly experienced travellers. I realized that a guide book is not necessary. Not having one makes you seek answers and experience wonderful surprises. 

The girl on Luke’s right is the yak herder hitchhiker who was interested in his marital status as well as his knowledge about raising animals.

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Alum Spotlight

Captivated by people on the trail By Priya Varghese (00) Tim, owner of Monson General Store, has been telling stories over the counter for 45 minutes, jingling my change in his hand. He talks about his days in the Air Force as a “Maine-iac” and lobs every possible officer joke at my hiking partner, who was once an Air Force captain. As we trudge back to our hostel, we wave at a fellow thru-hiker who entertained us on several evenings with stories of his Huck Finn-esque adventures canoeing on the Mississippi River. Christian, trail-named Home Fry, and I have hiked the first 345 miles south-bound on the Appalachian Trail, and have over 1,800 left to go. I first caught the Trail bug when I met Christian in college. He envied my globetrotting and treks in far off mountains. I envied his intimate connection with Virginia’s Shenandoah mountains and summers working as a backpacking guide. He’d dreamed of hiking the AT since childhood. I liked the idea as a means of reintroduction to a country and region that were, in theory, my home. After years teaching and studying, the completion of my master’s in public policy converged with his exit from the Air Force, and we hit the trail. As in every backpacking excursion, I relished the intense freedom that comes with knowing that all I require for immediate sustenance is on my back and in the natural surroundings, as well as the heightened awareness of wildlife, weather and my own body. The Appalachian Trail, however, is more than simply a long route or extended hike. There is a vibrant thru-hiker community — those currently on the trail who form loose clusters as they march toward either endpoint at Springer Mountain in Georgia or Mt. Katahdin in Maine. Trail Angels, often thru-hiker alums, appear suddenly around the

bend with coolers invitingly full of food and sugary drinks or leave encouraging notes pinned to stashes of home baked treats. People like Chet open their homes to weary hikers needing a roof over their heads and U-turn on small, country roads just to shuttle a bedraggled hiker into town. Although I have relished sleeping beside rushing waterfalls, the rapture of dramatic sunsets over the Presidential Range and the physical and mental challenge of this undertaking, discovering the immense kindness of strangers and hearing their stories are major parts of this hike. Although not even comparable to the more visible racial diversity of a place such as SAS, the trail remains diverse nonetheless. The appeal of such an adventure has struck the hearts of people from extraordinarily different walks of life — professionally, economically, culturally and otherwise. We have met hikers hoping to stretch $500 from Maine to Georgia and avoiding towns, “money pits” as one called them.One elderly German couple spends every night off-trail in a rented home, using two cars to shuttle on and off the Trail, and enjoying the most delectable cheeses, chutneys and wine on spotless, embroidered picnic cloths. In only 300 miles we have met stone masons, security software consultants, fishermen, translators and mental healthcare providers. We’ve met pre-adolescents and retirees, men and women, seasoned backpackers and others who’d never slept outside until their first night on the trail — all captivated by the notion of walking 2,178 miles.

To follow Priya’s journey, see priyaelizabeth.blogspot.com. 26

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Alum Spotlight

Alum sings for his supper a soloist as part of the celebration for the 2009 European Music Day. The rest of the trip involved a healthy amount of sightseeing and a considerably less healthy amount of eating. After two weeks many of us became remarkably adept at ordering ice cream in Italian. After the fabulous concerts, the amazing people on tour and the delicious meals and daily gelato, the hardest part of touring was coming back home. Admittedly, by the end I was looking forward to being able to get a decent hamburger. One of the most pressing insecurities any musician faces has to do with his ability to support himself financially, and this worry contributed to my decision to pursue a physics degree. A performance career is by nature extraordinarily competitive and rewards the well-connected and the well-prepared, often ahead of those who may be more talented. Thankfully, I’ve been incredibly lucky in my nascent career and managed to meet just the right people. When I performed in UCSB’s opera workshop production of Gaetano Donizetti’s Viva La Mamma!, one singer was a Santa Barbara native and former UCSB graduate student. We got along very well, and about a month after the opera was over, he asked if I could cover for him at a Santa Barbara Mission choir concert. I was reluctant until he mentioned that it was a paying gig, at which point I immediately accepted. I had a great experience with the choir, and afterward I was asked to replace a baritonetenor who was leaving. I am now a choral scholar at the Santa Barbara Mission (and apparently, a Catholic minister). The experience has taught me that opportunities arise in the most unlikely of situations, and being able to recognize those opportunities is essential. I once thought I’d study music casually and keep it easy and low key. The truth is that music is never easy, whether as an amateur or at the professional level. It demands enormous dedication, sacrifice and love. Improving my singing has been hard work and will continue to be hard work, and that’s exactly how I like it. 

By Andrew Padgett (05) In high school, I often entertained thoughts of becoming a musician — I’d enter a university or conservatory as a piano or voice major and somehow my career path would be clear from that point on. At the time I didn’t have a very wellformed idea of what making a living as a musician would actually entail, but the prospect of it was sufficiently intimidating to eventually convince me to get my undergraduate degree in physics. I told myself that I was keeping music as a hobby, as something to do for fun. That way music would stay easy and never turn into work. During my undergraduate studies at the University of California at Santa Barbara, I sang in the UCSB chamber choir, took voice lessons, sang in recitals and performed in opera productions. While I worked hard in both physics and music, the music never became work. I came to understand why this was the case just before winter break last year. I realized that I understood the language of music and of singing better than any of the equations in physical mechanics. I had more talent, ambition and uniqueness in singing than anywhere else. Most importantly, music was something that I loved. I thought, what if I could do this all the time? That week, I told my professor that I’d decided to pursue a master’s degree in voice and asked him for help in finding a program and putting together my audition materials. He shrugged and said, “Why not just stay here?” Given the progress I’d made under his tutelage, I agreed that it would be best to continue studying with him. Luckily, I was able to have my audition requirement waived and secured my acceptance into UCSB’s graduate voice program. Since then, I’ve been busy — after all, I still needed to graduate. Once that was done, I spent an amazing two weeks traveling with the UCSB chamber choir on a concert tour in Italy. We had several concerts in Tuscany, including Siena’s Palazzo Pubblico, where I had the honor of being featured as 27

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Alum Spotlight

Amanda went to Manhattan Chi-Chi went to Bangladesh

By Chi-Chi Lin (08) and Amanda Tsao (08)

young and both were women in male-dominated working environments.

Once there were two best friends named Chi-Chi and Amanda. When they were eleven, Chi-Chi taught Amanda how to take the MRT. When they were teenagers, Amanda forced Chi-Chi to read for leisure. Graduation day came; ChiChi went to Cornell, and Amanda went to Smith. The summer after their freshmen year, the two received internships. At Panigram Resort, an eco boutique hotel, ChiChi designed and constructed a pavilion for an investors’ meeting. At Forbes Magazine, Amanda wrote articles and pitched story ideas to various editors. Chi-Chi went to Bangladesh. Amanda went to Manhattan. Chi-Chi went barefoot. Amanda wore high heels. Chi-Chi was at the construction site, hiding under banana leaves during a monsoon storm. Amanda was stored away in an office crammed with unused fans and archive cabinets. Yet the obstacles they faced were similar — both were

   In Bangladesh, Chi-Chi had several factors working against her — she was a foreign, educated, young woman. As a guest in Bangladesh, she was not expected to be assertive. As a university-educated individual, she was not expected to do hard labor — picking up a hoe was definitely out of the question. As a 19-year- old, she was not expected to give orders to mishteri (skilled laborers) with over 30 years of experience. And as a woman, she was not expected to talk — one villager requested that she “close her mouth.” Construction began at 6 a.m. every morning with no power tools, wheelbarrows or even measuring tape. The workers used falling pieces of dirt as plumb drops; a plastic tube filled with river water served as a level; and torn coconut leaves were rulers. Even a single inch could throw off all the meas28

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Alum Spotlight write up questions for broadcast reporters to use — far from her glamorous vision of working at Forbes. Fortunately, things changed. One day, Amanda went downstairs to sulk alone by the drinks machine. Instead, she met a garrulous copy machine repairman named Jose who struck up a 15-minute conversation with her while he repaired a machine. Amanda went back upstairs in higher spirits; a few hours later she found her team congregated around a jammed copying machine with their unhappy boss. No one knew how to fix it, and copies were needed immediately. Jumping at the opportunity to prove her “manly” competency, Amanda picked up a screwdriver and fixed the machine. Soon after, she was made project manager. Things became better after that. Amanda quickly learned that she didn’t have to do trivial work. By filling her time working for more interesting editors, she found she could turn down most boring assignments and still justify her wages. So she pitched countless stories to the technology editor in Silicon Valley, the travel and lifestyle editors in the next building and the markets editor. Amanda also organized a waffle party for her floor. At the end of summer as she stepped through a sea of unwanted fans in her office for the last time, she had published numerous articles ranging in topic from small cap companies to travel in Inner Mongolia. Reunited in Singapore at Chi-Chi’s house like old times, Chi-Chi showed Amanda her battle scars like any bhai (brother) would do to impress a friend, while Amanda checked the reader ratings on her Forbes.com stories for the umpteenth time. 

urements on such a large scale. In the beginning, Chi-Chi would point out an uneven step or a crooked post, and the workers would nod and simply reply, “It will be fine. Stop disturbing us.” Chi-Chi persevered and worked alongside the team, stomping through cow dung during mud-mixing, using a da (machete) to trim bamboo and wading through the river with timber hoisted on her shoulders. Since Chi-Chi was often alone at the construction site, she was forced to learn Bengali to communicate her design and vision to the team. After some time, the team accepted her as the chotto boss (little boss), directly approaching her with questions and confirming measurements and details. They invited her to sit on the floor and eat lunch with her hands off a banana leaf. They invited her to tea stalls for after-work drinks, and they offered her cigarettes. “My boss told me to take this as a compliment because women aren’t allowed to smoke,” Chi-Chi said. “I was officially accepted as a respected member of their man circle.”    On the other side of the sphere, Amanda battled a different set of problems. Assigned to a ten-person project, she was the youngest, the only one who didn’t go to a big-name school and the only woman. She often felt she had to work twice as hard in order to be taken seriously. Additionally, as an intern — lowest on the corporate totem pole — her days were filled with assignments to transcribe interviews, organize thousands of unlabeled tapes by date and category and

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APL and PTA promote the spirit of giving with pumpkins American President Lines, now a subsidiary of Singapore’s Neptune Orient Lines, carried many SASers and their families to and from the United States in leisurely comfort on the President Wilson, the President Roosevelt and the President Cleveland in the days when Pan American was a fledgling airline that puddlejumped across the Pacific. Today APL brings pumpkins, not passengers, to SAS each fall.

High school students help the PTA unload, clean, distribute and sell the pumpkins, gourds and dried corn. The proceeds go toward those high school service projects that have a direct impact on people or projects.

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A great way to celebrate the successful start to a school year and more importantly the first event that brings the SAS community together is the PTA’s much anticipated Pumpkin Sale. In always-sunny Singapore, any touch of the fall season is a treat for everyone. APL international shipping company was a founder donor of the Singapore American School in 1955. Its close relationship with the school has continued over the decades, especially over the last 10 years when it has provided pumpkins for the community. The arrival of the pumpkins sets off a cycle of sharing and giving that ultimately benefits several Singapore charities and is fun as well. APL donates the pumpkins; student and faculty volunteers unload the container; Parent Teacher Association members organize the distribution and sale of the pumpkins; the profits go to High School service clubs; and the clubs use the funds for charitable purposes. APL calls this cycle “The Great Halloween Pumpkin Journey.” For the last 10 years, the PTA has partnered with APL in putting on an October extravaganza. APL sponsors the purchase and shipment of hundreds of pumpkins from the USA to Singapore a fortnight before Halloween. On the Saturday after they arrive, the “Great Pumpkin Unloading” is undertaken by volunteers from the high school service clubs, the PTA , teachers, administrators and Superintendent Brent Mutsch. There is even a “Pumpkin Cleaning Crew,” which

gently wipes the dirt off the pumpkins, and this year the custodial staff also donated their time to the project. Students deliver a good portion of the pumpkins and gourds to the Kindergarten Group Room, which is decorated in an autumn theme, filled to the rafters with the pumpkins, dried corn and gourds and transformed into the “Pumpkin Patch.” ECC and Primary School students visit the Pumpkin Patch by class and listen to age-appropriate spooky stories. They receive treats from the PTA and get to pick out a little pumpkin or gourd to take home. Many American parents and students are overwhelmed when they visit the Pumpkin Patch, as the smell of hay coupled with the sight of hundreds of pumpkins and heart-warming decorations give rise to a strong sense of nostalgia. Both the Pumpkin Patch and Sale are touchstones of cherished Thanksgiving holidays as well as Halloween and offer a chance for non-Americans to enjoy the festivities associated with the American fall season. On the Saturday after the “Pumpkin Unload,” the remaining pumpkins and gourds are sold to SAS parents, teachers and staff. All of the proceeds from the sale go to the high school community service clubs for specific projects that have a direct impact on the charities that the clubs support, i.e., the funds pay for buses that take students to visit an elder care center, not for decorating a club’s classroom. These events would not be possible without the generous support of APL. Its continued involvement has enabled an American tradition to thrive on the SAS campus and provided students with a way to earn funds to give to others. 

Pumpkin profits provide SAVE (Students against Violating the Environment) Club members with transportation to the mangrove swamps and beaches for the annual International Coastal Cleanup Day in Singapore.

Pumpkin profits pay for special meals for residents of the Singapore Leprosy Home, which students visit every Friday.

By Mae Anderson, PTA President and Lauren Thomas, Alumni Relations

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Around Singapore

Alumni participate in College & Career Day

Diana Fong (04) told students about her work with the Singapore Tyler Print Institute.

On September 17, College & Career Day, 60 professionals, including four alumni sat on 19 different panels, and 30 college representatives shared information and answered questions about their schools. Peer Support students helped with the checking-in process and escorting speakers to classrooms; teachers served as moderators for each of the panels; and Booster Club parent volunteers and school counselors managed the planning and logistics. The students said that they liked the diversity of the professions on the panels this year and felt that the career development activities helped them think of many different

forms of employment that they could pursue. The Alumni Office would especially like to thank Yatin Premchand (95), founder of EcoWhiz, Anish Jain (02), Senior Associate at Temasek Holdings, Diana Fong (04), Assistant Curator/Education Coordinator, Singapore Tyler Print Institute, and Matt Rogers (95), Development Manager, Aman Resorts. SAS welcomes alumni participation in College & Career Day as well as other school events, such as Mentor for a Day and Homecoming. 

Anish Jain (02) is a senior associate at Temasek Holdings.

Matt Rogers (95) is a development manager for Aman Resorts.

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Around Singapore

3rd annual Homecoming marks 40 years of SAS-ISKL exchanges

Homecoming King Jamie Lim (10) and Queen Brooke McManigal (10).

Water dispenser drums and loud cheers for Eagle versus Panther soccer games.

The HS Student Council hosted the now-annual SAS Homecoming on Friday, September 4 with soccer games against the International School of Kuala Lumpur. The event marks 40 years of SAS-ISKL sports exchanges. The semiannual exchanges began in 1969 at a time when SAS students were enjoying their first indoor gymnasium and fully equipped campus on King’s Road, while the fledgling ISKL was still operating out of an old house. Homecoming SAS-style is an all-ages event intended to unify SASers from tots to alumni. It is a week-long event that fosters class spirit, recognizes the achievements of seniors through a Homecoming Court, provides a venue for the en-

tire SAS community to come together in a non-academic environment and is just plain fun. The week leading up to Homecoming featured a variety of special-dress days and lighthearted class spirit competitions in the high school. The culminating events of the week were Friday night soccer games with the ISKL Panthers on the main stadium field. Activities for all ages took place on the back fields, and the Homecoming Court was recognized between games. In the soccer competitions, the Eagle girls soared, winning 1-0, but the Panthers plucked a few feathers in the boys’ game, resulting in a 0-2 loss for SAS. 

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Around Singapore

Alumna’s memorials encourage students to reach for their dreams

Winner of a Kendra Chiota Payne Global Studies Award, Yenly Thach, with Activity/Athletic Director Mimi Molchan and Director of Communications Beth Gribbon standing in the SAS Memory Garden in front of Kendra’s memorial plaque.

“If anything is worth doing, do it with all your heart” embodies the spirit of Kendra Chiota Payne (SAS 02), a young woman with a zest for living and a boundless depth of character. Kendra was killed in 2006 while training for a triathlon at the University of California at Santa Barbara, but memories of her remain strong on both sides of the Pacific. At SAS each October, the swim team competes in the Kendra Chiota Payne Memorial Biathlon. At the awards ceremony, the coach or athletic director tells Kendra’s story. She was a star athlete on the swim, track and cross country teams and is remembered for her beautiful smile and generous spirit as well as her athletic skills. At UC Santa Barbara, where she was a member of the Class of 06, Kendra is recognized in the yearly Kendra Chiota Payne Triathlon and by the annual Kendra Chiota Payne Memorial Awards, which were created by her family, friends and team mates and are administered by the UCSB Foundation. These awards are given to young women for sports internships, which recognize Kendra’s love of athletics, or for

global studies that promote international leadership and global citizenship to honor Kendra’s dream of working for the Peace Corps. Yenly Thach, a master’s degree student at UCSB, received the 2009 Global Studies Award for her work with the UN High Commission on Refugees on policies and practices regarding female and child refugees in Cambodia. She is a Cambodian American who spent the first eight years of her life in refugee camps. On her way to Cambodia in October, Yenly stopped in Singapore and visited SAS. She met with two of the winners of the 09 Biathlon — Ted Chritton (10) and Therese Vainius (11) — and visited Kendra’s memorial in the SAS Memory Garden. She also met the two Cambodian scholarship students who attend SAS, Rathana and Cherry — linking and interconnecting a Singapore initiative with SAS people with U.S. programs in that wonderful 6-degree way that is so very strong in the global community and that celebrates Kendra’s spirit by giving and sharing.  34

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Around Singapore

In Wayzata, Minnesota, on September 20, Bob Dodge met with Andrea Fenske (former faculty), Cat Ward (07), Katia Nicolaides Holmes (88), Erin Schwamb Voss (98) and Suzanne DeFoe Day (86).

Alums greet former teacher, colleague at book signings In August and September, alumni and old friends gathered in several U.S. cities to greet Bob Dodge (SAS history teacher 1983-06) at some of the talks and book signings for his new book, Prairie Murders: The True Story of Three Murders and the Loss of Innocence in a Small North Dakota Town. The two-month tour began and ended in West Fargo, North Dakota, his home town and the scene of the crimes, which took place in the 1970s.

Dodge lives and writes in Singapore, where wife Jane and daughter Anne Dodge Carroll (03) both teach at SAS. On October 27, 60 friends, colleagues and alumni attended his talk and book signing at the American Club. Both Prairie Murders and Dodge’s earlier work, The Strategist: The Life and Times of Thomas Schelling, are available on Amazon. 

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Around Singapore

In Boston, on September 26, Kartini Shastry (98) arranged a get-together of 24 alums at Kingston Station. Dodge is pictured with Won Kyung Chang (96), Chang Hee Kim (87) and Francesco Zargani (86).

Signing books for teachers and parents of alumni at the American Club on October 27.

Mr. Ho’s Chicken Curry Chicken Curry for 5 people

2 kg chicken, disjointed 500 ml chicken stock 4 Tbs oil 300 g onion, sliced thinly 3 cloves chopped garlic 0.5 tsp ginger powder 4 tsp coriander powder 1 tsp cumin powder 2 tsp chili powder

Middle school Hoe and high school Ho, brothers cooking for SASers since 1965.

2 tsp turmeric powder 0.5 tsp garam masala 5 candlenuts blended into paste with 1 cup coconut milk 5 curry leaves 4 peeled potatoes cut into 8 pieces each 2 chopped tomatoes 1 cup plain yoghurt

Combine all the powdered ingredients and the blended candlenut into a curry paste. Heat the oil. Brown onion and garlic; then add the curry paste, curry leaves and chicken. Stir fry until fragrant. Add chicken stock, potatoes and tomatoes; cover and cook over a low heat until the chicken is tender. Add the yoghurt and cook for another 5 minutes. Salt to taste. Serve with rice or roti prata.

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Bugis Street is now a glassed-over and air-conditioned haven for boutique retail shops.

Singapore’s Bugis Street Bugis Street — was it bawdy, glamorous, sleazy, sad? From the 1960s through the mid-1980s, Bugis Street was a notorious venue for transvestites, military personnel and tourists. After midnight, the ah-kua strutted in gorgeous attire and flirted with patrons, British sailors drank beer and danced on tabletops and American soldiers on R&R ogled and cheered. It was a titillating taste of the East for tourists and a daring destination for SASers, complete with fist fights, drugs, hawkers, vendors and touts. And yet it was a friendly, happy, albeit somewhat grubby place to hang out. As one 60s alum said, “It was one of the few places that stayed open all night, and the beer was cheap.” Pamelia Lee, mother of Shaun and Kern (99), describes Bugis Street as “a living stage” with a momentum and “rhythm that everyone seemed to understand,” in her book, Singapore, Tourism & Me. She adds that, when it was redeveloped, “Tourism lost a spontaneous, rather harmless attraction that cannot be recreated.” Memories of Bugis Street range from the visceral to the poignant. I remember it as just another bunch of outdoor hawker stalls. Ellen Brown remembers it as a friendly hangout and a place to shock newcomers, while Steve Studebaker describes a vibrant, visceral nightlife. Junia Baker, Editor 37

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A gentle take on Bugis Street By Ellen Brown Gaffney (68) At the beginning of each school year, we always took the new students to Bugis Street as part of their introduction to Singapore. We wouldn’t tell them about the transvestites and then sit back and watch their reactions. The other times we went there were during the week of the SAS-ISB games. We’d go to the school functions and then head to Bugis Street for additional partying as the chances of running into coaches and/or parents were slim. We also went to Bugis Street after the prom. It was the perfect place to kill time until going to Changi Beach or Faber Hill to watch the sun rise. Then on to the American Club for breakfast before heading home to sleep! We tended to sit at the same vendor’s table, so got to know them and some of the “girls.” One transvestite I really enjoyed talking to was a truck driver. The majority were working men by day. Some were real “queens,” but most were very enjoyable to talk to. Most were pretty obvious, but there were several that really were stunning “women” until they opened their mouths. Getting to know the vendor and girls came in really handy

Bugis Street was a living stage ...Tourism lost a spontaneous, rather harmless attraction that cannot be receated. Pamelia Lee on a few occasions. Fights were very common, especially when drunk military (American, British, Australian) personnel on R&R realized their potential dates were not female. These fights were usually isolated in one section. Twice though, huge fights broke out — tables, glassware, chairs, etc. were thrown all over the place, and it was pretty scary. Both times, the transvestites got us out of there quickly and safely. 

The stalls, the people from all walks of life, the infamous toilet building…

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Men by day, ladies by night.

11/21/09, 1:23 PM


“Boogie Street” A collage of emotions barely pierced by the fluorescent lights. At the stroke of midnight, absolute silence descended upon this chaotic scene, and heads jerked in perfect unison to catch the first glimpse of the “Parade of Queens.” A wave of sound slowly rose from the crowd, erupting into a deafening cheer as the “boogies” came into view in their glimmering evening gowns, slit to the waist, with angels’ voices promising unbelievable and unattainable rewards. They were beautiful! They were the queens of Bugis Street! As the ladies weaved through the crowds, the youngest and drunkest revilers would struggle to ascend to the roof of the notoriously dirty toilet shed. In a rite of passage, or perhaps to strut their virility, they would disrobe and set fire to rolled up newspapers clasped between their thighs. The men would wave the burning torches in the air, and the night would fill with flashes, rivaling any fireworks display. Rushing at the end to remove these blossoming torches before serious burns were incurred often proved difficult. Inebriation does not go hand in hand with coordination, and the crowd would cheer at their attempts to douse the flames. The air reverberated with laughter and arguments. Street urchins wove in and out of the crowd in long shorts, singlets and rubber slippers, stopping only to invite visitors to games of noughts and crosses (tic tac toe). They travelled in schools, and sharks they were, only losing to pull you deeper into the trap. Boogie Street was alive and in full swing! As morning approached and dawn could be seen on the horizon, the crowds slowly melted away; the tables were wiped down and folded up. The sweepers began to clear away the evidence of the night. Bugis Street became a plain and innocuous street, and the transvestites assumed their imperfect male identities for their day jobs. Both awaited the darkness of the night and their rebirth. This is how I remember Bugis Street, more as a collage of emotions than as a place. There was and is no place like her. Her narrow, glamorous and sensuous body surrounded by Chinese walk-ups and 5-foot-wide sidewalks forever remains with me and as part of me, as does all my SAS family! [The fierce Bugis people of southern Sulawesi, Indonesia, were often called Boogiemen. — Ed.] 

By Steven Studebaker (82) Songs have been written, movies have been made, but all have fallen short of the “Boogie Street” found in the collective memories of those who have been there and lived it in the late 1970s and early 1980s. It was far more than a street. Bugis Street was a place where spirit became flesh, where the transvestites who viewed themselves as imperfect and trapped in the light of day became perfect and free in the darkness of the night, like the street itself, by day a rather plain and innocuous street but the epicenter of nightlife after midnight. The mere mention of Bugis Street brought attraction, excitement and revulsion to mind. It was the one place in a city of rules and boundaries where none existed. Trapped between two queens (Queen Street and Victoria Street), Bugis Street took no prisoners. The Royal Navy, Commonwealth military personnel and countless thrill seekers and tourists threw themselves upon her rocks in answer to her sirens’ call. Your senses were overwhelmed. The roar of a thousand conversations at once, the hawkers peddling their wares, the drunkards babbling incoherently, the smell of urine, beer and fried food all entwined to create a sickeningly sweet, yet familiar atmosphere. A haze hung over the street from steaming woks and cigarettes, seeming to hide secrets that were

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35+ Years

Alumni from the 50s, 60s

Teilmann & Lundy clans reunite: Becky Lundy Emmerson (69), Evalin Teilmann Trice (72), Johanna Teilmann Perry (64), Allen Lundy (66), Tiga Teilmann (74), Mark Lundy (71), Tom Lundy (67).

Duncan McPhee (70), Elaine Wales Koch (70), Charlie Glass (69), Eileen Shima Roulier (70)

Ann Lindberg (70), Chris Hock Miley (69), Ernie Wong (68).

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35+ Years

and 70s meet in D. C.

Russell Ng (67), Kathi Brown Gentry (73), Rob and Karol Tice Evans (69) and Constance Ng at Union Station.

Mainguy (74) from France and Dr. Richard Juve (faculty 6668) from China. Among the alumni attending were a number of Canadians, whose presence at the reunion is currently under investigation by the Department of Homeland Security. The reunion commenced on Friday evening with a cocktail reception, which allowed the attendees to meet and greet old friends and make new ones. The attendees enjoyed listening to a recital by the SAS Concert Choir from the early 1970s under the direction of Jim Perry (Director of Music 7174) and with Inge Verhoef Lass (74) on the piano, the choir

By Patricia Wales (68) and Stephen Hurst (74) Over 120 alumni, family and friends gathered at the Hyatt Regency in Washington, D.C. from July 17 to 19 to celebrate their years at SAS. The alumni included those who attended in the beginning years in the 1950s and those who graduated in the 1960s and 1970s. For about 30 alumni, this was their first SAS reunion since leaving Singapore. Traveling the farthest were Jim Baker (66) and Russell Ng (67) from Singapore, Carro Donlan Cations (70) from Australia, Elisabeth 41

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35+ Years sang “Majulah Singapura,” followed by several hymns. This performance marked the 35th anniversary of the Concert Choir’s tour of the United States in the spring of 1974. Afterward, the different classes were photographed — and not a single photo was in focus! Washington, as a historical and magnificent city, has an abundance of attractions. With no specific activities scheduled during the day on Saturday, the attendees made their own plans. Under the guidance of Allan Lundy (68), about 24 of them enjoyed a three-hour Segway tour of the National Mall and surrounding areas (see cover picture). Others put on their walking shoes and toured various exhibits around the National Mall. On Saturday evening, attendees gathered at an Asian restaurant near the White House to enjoy traditional Oriental cuisine. On Sunday morning, the alumni gathered at brunch to say their farewells, reminisce and make plans to stay in touch. It was agreed that the next reunion will be held on the west coast of the United States. On behalf of the planning committee, we hope that all of those who attended the reunion enjoyed themselves, were able to reconnect with old friends, to reminisce about their time in Singapore and at SAS and to recognize the significance of that period in their lives. It was a great time to reflect and revisit! Looking forward to seeing everyone in two years!

Mary Howes Seay (74), Juan Rivera (74), Sally Howes Cooper (77), DiAnn Schmidt Keohl (75), Jay Vandersteenhoven (74), Craig Friske (74), Tiga Teilmann (74), Tom Seay (74).

Concert Choir Sings Again By Inge Lass Verhoef (74) The 60s and 70s reunion in Washington, D.C. was also the 35th year reunion of the Class of 1974. That year the SAS Concert Choir visited the United States and sang on the steps of the Capitol in Washington, a wonderful conclusion to our years with music teacher Jim Perry. We brought the SAS Concert Choir back together to perform at this reunion and had an amazing time! Many of the choir members had never been to a reunion and only attended to be part of the choir experience. We tracked down Jim Perry, who said it had long been a dream of his to get this choir back together. And I was thrilled to be able to accompany the choir on the piano again. We had 25 out of the original 39 choir members, which was incredible! Many deep

SAS Concert Choir on King’s Road Campus in 1974

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35+ Years

Concert Choir members from the classes of 1972-1976: Inge Verhoef Lass at the piano and Choir Director Jim Perry, (front) Nancy Seal Herbert, Debra Moore Spaller, DiAnn Schmidt Koehl, Brenda Fox Collins, Kihm Umbehr Blount, Nia Schooler, Janice Shurtleff Blackhurst, Mary Howes Seay, Jenny Kraar, Jan Howard Clark; (middle) Laura Gray Garrick, K.K. Watts Jacobsma, Jenny Grant Prileson, Debbie Rowell Riches, Liz Cooper Adams, Elisabeth Mainguay; (back) Sam Brodland, Tiga Teilmann, George Koehl, Rex Jacobsma, Jay Vandersteenhoven, Juan Rivera, David Seal.

emotions were felt as we reconnected, and everybody told stories of what they’d been up to for the past 35 years. We quickly slipped back into the old rhythm … the first piece we rehearsed had many of us in tears. It was incredible to hear those 17-year-old voices in their mature state — and the blended harmony sounding so good so many years later. Singing the old songs made us nostalgic, though I had to laugh to hear a bunch of 50-year-olds sing “We’ve Only Just Begun.” The bonding experience of the choir being together for almost four days made this reunion particularly poignant. We even managed to convince the reclusive Jan Howard (74) to join us — on one day’s notice and thanks to the incredible persuasive powers of her and Jeff Brelsford’s (74) son, Alan. Little did we know we would only have that one day with her, as sadly she passed away only a month after the reunion. We were so blessed to share that experience with her — time is

so precious. If alumni want to make a donation to the SAS Foundation in Jan’s name, contact alumni@sas.edu.sg. Many, many friendships were rekindled, and most of us now keep in touch through Facebook, posting old photos and new ones from the reunion. The Singapore experience left an indelible impression on all of us and holds a special place in our hearts. Our class of 1974 was particularly closeknit … we feel more part of the lives of one another once more, and we’re looking forward to the next reunion — who knows, we might even get the choir back together AGAIN! [Jim Perry, who taught vocal music at SAS 71-74, and Brian Leonard, who taught instrumental music 70-78, built an incredible music program, which included concert choir, two chorus groups and three outstanding bands that were capable of performing full-scale musicals, such as Oklahoma in 1972 and South Pacific in 1973. — Ed.]  43

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30 Years

Class of 79: (back) VP Charles Longbottom, teacher Charlie Hart, learning specialist Karen Studebaker, David Brown, Linda Rosenthal, Steve Kennon, Onara Marie Bell, Scott Gill, Jay Flood, Stacy Boutte, Randi Merchant, Sedana Markham, Scott Laughlin, Mike Babinec, Tom Howes, teacher Linda Clarke, Allison Garrett, Martha Donaldson, Kerry Kreiling, Melvin Conjugacion, James Otis, unknown, Astrid Holmes, Susan Corrigan, Mark Brandon; (front) Bill Sibley, Steve Moffa, Katy Hayes Jordan, Dale Smith. Not pictured: Yasuo Pak, Bob Lansford, Malene Smith, Heidi Strickland, Mike Warren.

Bonds with SAS family still strong after 30 years full of laughter. Friday morning began with the ”SAS Coffee Club” meeting out by the pool with their SAS coffee mugs in hand. At 10 am a surprise guest arrived from Honolulu — Melvin Conjugation (79)! Mel’s name came up every time we had a reunion, yet he had never attended one. It was an awesome way to start the day. Also joining us for the first time was Tim McElgunn (79), who flew in from New Jersey. He left Singapore after 10th grade so it had been 32 years since he had seen anyone. Mid afternoon was a personal thrill for me when four of our beloved faculty members arrived: Charles Longbottom, who was vice-principal our senior year, Charlie Hart, an all time favorite teacher, Dora Taylor and Linda Clarke, who is still teaching at SAS. Ulu Pandan learning specialist Karen Studebaker and teacher Judy Bushman attended as well.

By Katy Hayes Jordan (79) I want to thank all of you who came to Houston this summer to help the Class of 79 celebrate its 30th anniversary! My wish for this seventh reunion in which I have been involved was for it to be the biggest and best, and my wish came true in spades. Throughout the weekend we saw around 170 alumni, faculty and parents from the classes of 1974-1985. We had representatives from at least a dozen states, and folks from Canada, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Egypt and the Canary Islands. With family members, the total came to well over 200. The fun began Thursday with over 50 “early birds.” Despite the horrific heat, about 12 of the hard core golfers went out for a round. The evening that followed was relaxed and 44

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30 Years

Class of 80: Steve Provost, unknown, Ron Berglund, Sue Wilson, Charlie Hart, Birgit Oberleitner, David Heath, Laurie Anne Winfield, Craig Babinec, Fred Harkrider, Chris Wilson, Terri Kirby, unknown, Susan Studebaker-Rutledge, Brad Cantrell, Ginger McKenzie, Sunny Stevens, Mark Neville, Carol Moody, Warren Pendree, Joel Kjome.

our very own alumni band. Bruce Walston (79) and his brother Rob (82) have been playing for over 10 years, mostly for their own enjoyment, and were thrilled to showcase their talents for such an enthusiastic group. It was a wonderful evening of great music, reminiscing,

The presence of all this faculty was truly the icing on a most wonderful cake. Friday night was an icebreaker cocktail party, complete with a big screen flashing pictures from the “old days,” a collection of photos I have been gathering from alumni over the past 30 years. Karen Studebaker commented that the photos were “an amazing learning experience! I thought I knew everything that was going on in those days! Wrong!” Great tunes of the 70s played, and fantastic door prizes, treasures that had been hand-picked and carried by Susan Studebaker-Rutledge (80) and Linda Clarke all the way from Singapore, were given out. The most coveted prize was Mr. Ho’s famous chicken curry recipe, complete with an autographed picture of him, which Susan framed beautifully. What has now become the infamous “317 Party Suite” was hosted by Steve Kennon (79), Buddy Byington (81), Scott Gill (79) and Steven Moffa (79). Through the years, this room is where the party never stops. Saturday morning brought another “SAS Coffee Club,” although I am not sure as many made it down as early as the day before. More alumni arrived as well as some of the parents who live in the Houston area. Earlier I had made the executive decision to move our late afternoon Tex-Mex lunch inside to the ballroom so everyone could enjoy air-conditioned comfort. We had the slide show running and awesome 70s tunes again and more door prizes. Everyone enjoyed ice cold drinks in plastic bags ... remember those? In the evening we gathered in the hotel bar to listen to

Veteran reunion hostess Katy Hayes Jordan holds Grudy, the reunion mascot for the Class of 79.

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30 Years

The Babinec clan was, in Singapore days, composed of Mike and Sue (Singapore 76-81), Pam (77), Michael T. (79), Craig (80) & Leslie (81). The offspring have taken clan development to a whole new level. Michael T. married Pam’s college roommate, Mary, & they have a son, Michael. Leslie married Tim Trout, Craig’s best friend in grades 1-3 in Libya, & they have three children, Monica, Robert & Michelle. Pam is moving to the Dallas area to begin sharing her life & that of her two sons Tad and Stephen with Craig’s close friend, Fred Harkrider (80). Craig brought a friend, Karen, to introduce to his former classmates, along with his two sons, Connor and Bryce. Pictured are Mike, Leslie and Sue with Leslie’s three children.

tears. I know I for one had a warm and full heart after a warm and full four days of being with people I love. A huge thank you to Lauren Thomas, our wonderful SAS Alumni coordinator, to Karen Studebaker and Buddy Byington for their hard work and dedication finding alumni, faculty and parents and encouraging them to attend, and to Bess Corbell Terhune (78), who for 20 years has been what I call my “right brain” when putting reunions together. The newest addition to my brain (seems as I get older I need more than just a right brain) is Missy Theriot. She stayed with us earlier in the year to help me get organized and spent many hours putting together the “Tunes of the 70s.” She and Bess came a week before the reunion to help. Last, my wonderful and patient family are un-sung heroes. Bobby (77) works behind the scenes, running errands, fetching and toting and enthusiastically packing up for next time. My daughter Kristal put the slide show together and served along with a buddy as a babysitting service. She was always asking me what she could do to help and at pivotal times saw things that needed to be done and just did them. My son Nathan was our capable and efficient audio visual guy. He played DJ, set up the big screen and was in charge of the video presentations. My parents, Bill and Sue Hayes, sold beer tickets Friday night and managed our “Reunion Memorabilia Shop” on Saturday. And a HUGE shout to Bruce Walston, Rob Walston, Jackson Moydell (79) and the rest of the guys in the band. I

photo taking and even more hugs, love and laughter. A patron at the bar was blown away that we were a high school reunion. He said we seemed more like family. I told him we were that too. People ask me all the time why I work so hard to put these gatherings together, and I tell them that I do it because I am selfish. I truly feel a bond with my SAS family that I have not found with anyone else in my life. Even with SAS folks I meet for the first time, people I did not actually know in Singapore, I feel an immediate bond, and some of them have since become my close friends. The love that SAS alumni share is truly unique, and we are blessed to have one another; I refuse to let time and distance cheat me out of keeping that love in my life. I always have at least one “goose bump moment” during reunions, and this year was no different. Vance Blackwell (77), who was attending a reunion for the first time, came up to me with tears in his eyes, gave me a big hug and said, “Thank you for giving me back something in my life that I did not even realize was missing.” Sunday arrived way too soon! Most gathered down in the hotel restaurant for the farewell breakfast. Our reunion mascot, “Grudy,” a beautiful teak Garuda that was donated years ago by Steve Kennon, was passed to a new caretaker. Dean Jackson (80) reluctantly handed him over to Karl Theriot (79), who had been nominated by the breakfast crowd. Lots of “til next time” hugs and kisses mixed with more than a few 46

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30 Years

My first SAS reunion was a blast! By Linda Clarke, SAS teacher 76-present So what was it like for a first-time SAS reunion high school faculty member? There were actually five of us — social studies teacher Charlie Hart (78-80), English teacher/vice principal Charles Longbottom (77-84), French teacher Dora Taylor (77-83), learning specialist Karen Studebaker (75-81) and me. All of us agreed that we would gladly attend another reunion — it was a blast! Out of all of the former students, there were only two that I recognized. In my defense, it had been 30 years since I saw

them in the classroom! But once the names were shared, I could sometimes even remember the seats in which they sat. Faces had changed, body shapes had readjusted and hair had disappeared, but the sparkle in the eyes and the cheeky grins were the same — and the Warren brothers have not changed! The stories flowed — successes, trials, loss of classmates, births, job changes, ailments and a continual support system through SAS friendships. I cannot put a finger on the rubber cement that forms such a lasting bond among SAS students, but it lasts a lifetime. Upon meeting a peer not seen for 15 or 30 years, these alumni pick up conversations

Charlie Hart, social studies tacher 78-80, Karen Studebaker, learning specialist 75-83, Linda Clarke, business teacher 76present, and Charles Longbottom, English teacher/vice principal 77-83. Linda urges that all alumni, parents and teachers to keep in touch with one another because SAS and the people we know or knew in Singapore are “integral parts of who we are.”

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30 Years

as though they had never been apart. Being part of the interaction made me glow. Teaching is a profession generally not entered for money or status or ladder climbing. Teachers have unique opportunities to touch the lives of their charges. This can be done by role modeling, sharing a passion for a subject matter or belief or leisure activity or being a listener. Different personalities will spark, co-exist or repel. We know we cannot have a positive impact on every single student, but we try. How do we know if we have touched a life? Sometimes we get feedback from the student or parents. Sometimes we hear that a particular word or lesson or challenge made a difference. But not often. At this reunion, many, many alumni thanked me -- for being happy in home base or strict when necessary or providing a solid base in accounting that led to becoming a CPA and for listening. There were stories of being embarrassed when I kicked one of them out of class and continued wonder at how I always knew when someone was looking at the keyboard. Others could not believe my patience in dealing with continuous class interruptions. To hear about the impact that teachers had on the lives of these alumni was heartwarming. Reminiscing about the King’s Road campus in the late 70s and early 80s was just magical. Will I attend a future

I cannot put a finger on the rubber cement that forms such a lasting bond among SAS students, but it lasts a lifetime. Being a part of this interaction made me glow.

reunion — most definitely! I strongly urge all SAS alumni and parents to keep in touch with this learning experience we had/have in Singapore. The alumni office does a fantastic job of connecting SAS graduates around the globe. Do stay in touch always; for many of us, SAS and the acquaintances we have made in this country are integral parts of who we are.I

Val Jackson celebrated her 86 th birthday with son Dean (80) and other alumni at the reunion.

Lilian Chee and Jose Lopez, mother and step-father of Julia Nickson (76), Andy (79) and Jane (81) got the drift that Singapore food is always on the minds of SAS alums. On Saturday they arrived with Hokkien mee for Jane’s good friend, July Ellis Jolley (81), and brought enough mee and other Singapore dishes for many of us to share.

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30 Years

A massive group hug Walston brothers’ band performing at the Class of 79 reunion.

By Karen Studebaker, learning specialist 75-83

At the reunion, it was a challenge to sort truth from clearly embellished stories but there was always that indescribable bond — “you had to be there.” They admitted that being in a unique minority and seeing and experiencing things “no one back home had ever seen or done” was exciting. They embraced the depth of feeling they have for these lifelong friends, with whom there is instant communication when they meet again, even after 30 years. They like picking up where they left off, where everyone understands the other’s unusual life history — and knows where Singapore is! As expected, it was part clan meeting, part massive group hug. There were all sorts of clans from the extended Babinec family to the “We-Lived-In-Jakarta-At-the-Same-TimeClan” and the Dowell-Schlumberger group. They sang the praises of their alma mater, discussed their anxieties about “the new campus” that most had never seen and sorted fact from fiction in third- or fourth-hand stories they’d heard over the past 30-something years. They laughingly described the school’s shortcomings and their devotion to certain teachers or administrators and told hilarious stories about their quirks and foibles. A simply wonderful reunion. I

That walk through the “good old days” turned into a romp with 1974-85 alumni, faculty from Ulu Pandan and King’s Road campuses and parents of alumni. Alumni spouses and offspring, many steeped in the romanticized and sometimes embellished lore of living in Southeast Asia, rounded out the effort to reconstitute the ambience of the Singapore expat community from “the good old days.” At that time oil was the largest industrial sector. The largest segment of school enrollment came from California, Texas, Oklahoma and Louisiana. Many fathers traveled 5075% of the time on business or worked “21 on” (the rig) and “21 off” (terra firma in Singapore). A large segment of moms lived the lives of “tai-tais” with at least one live-in “amah,” had access to chauffeur-driven cars, enjoyed cultural experiences led by the American Women’s Association and lived in company provided houses that exceeded in size anything they had previously lived in or would live in again. Those were the days when football reigned. Often 1,000 people gathered on the Ulu Pandan field at 10 a.m. Saturday morning to watch elementary school football and stayed until 10 p.m. when the high school games finished.

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20 Years

Thankful to be third culture kids ing and telling stories of what happened over the break. This time our break was a bit longer. It had been at least 20 years since I had had a drink with any of these old friends. Dinner was another great flashback of piling into a cab with eight people. The destination a bit different — instead of Streets of London or The Warehouse, we had to choose between dinner on a deck or at the brewfest. (We chose the deck.) We laughed and told stories of our families and what we had been doing for the past two decades. We laughed at stories from college parties while comparing them with stories of Newton Circus and The Beer House. Each night we ended up in Sean Spalding’s and my suite. With a refrigerator full of beer and libations, we were ready for more memories. Yearbooks and pictures were spread throughout. Lauren (Kuhbander) had brought old air-band videos. Sean squeezed limes for his homemade margaritas. Life was good. Memories were abundant. Pictures reminded us of long-forgotten stories of Interim Semester, Baker’s island and IASAS trips. As the weekend came to a close, new memories and stories were born and will be talked about at future reunions. Hugs were given. Some final laughs were had. Promises to keep in touch were made. … and so I sat in the Atlanta airport, having missed my connecting flight to Portland, my delay reminiscent of delays in Bangkok and Kuala Lumpur. A smile came across my face, and I was thankful. Thankful for being a third culture kid. Thankful for a group of friends from all over the world that I can call family. Just thankful. I

Front: Nathalie Vo-Ta Antus, Alix Alvarado, Rianna Perry, Kristina Jeansonne Braud, Chris Schnitger; middle: Maggie Barker Vogel, Caroline Cancellare, Joe Barker, Pierre Jeansonne; back: Katie Whiting Bachner, Chelsea Orth Jennemyr, Sean Spaulding, Jason Frankel, Erica Johnson Buchanan, Stephen Hull.

By Jason Frankel (89) Just over 20 years ago I was honored to be able to speak at graduation breakfast. The theme was third culture kids. As third culture kids, we grew up outside the norm. We saw things that most adults, let alone kids, could only dream of. We went places that are seen only on the National Geographic channel. We learned a different kind of respect and responsibility. Yet, most of all, we learned that third culture kids were, are and always will be a family. It was this family that I was getting ready to see after 20 long years. While on the plane, I wondered what it was going to be like seeing everyone after such a long time. I had been on Facebook often, looking at profile pictures. I had to make sure that I would recognize everyone… “Welcome to Panama City where the local time is approximately 10:45 a.m.” By noon, I was sitting poolside. It reminded me of an afternoon pool party at Arcadia after returning from summer vacation. A group of friends just laughing, swimming, drink50

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10 Years

Class of 99 By Tina O’Neill Mysliwiec (99) We had an amazing turnout of 50 people at the SAS Class of 1999 10-year reunion this past June in Las Vegas. We stayed at the MGM Grand Casino on the Las Vegas Strip and enjoyed catching up. We began our celebrations Friday night when we met at the Rouge Lounge and continued the party all weekend long. Several of us met poolside during the day on Saturday before our big banquet Saturday evening. Our banquet was held at the Satay Malaysian Grille. The food definitely brought back memories of the hawker stalls in Singapore. At the dinner we had tables filled with SAS yearbooks, class pictures, an Eagle Eye from our senior year and SAS alumni bumper stickers. We had a surprise guest show up! Former SAS history teacher Michael Imperi stopped by with his wife and granddaughter to say “hello” and catch up with past students. We all had fun looking through the yearbooks and reminiscing about the wonderful times we spent together in Singapore. It always seems like we never have enough time to catch up, and I know we are all looking forward to seeing one another again in 2014 for our 15-year reunion. I

Class of 99 reunion attendees (back ) Will Regan and Victor Rameker, (front) Allyson Tippie-Rameker; Claire Scheidegger, Katie O’Gorman, Georgina Crawford, Beatrice Kirchhoff, Talitha Adhiwiyogo, Ryan Manteuffel and Katie Cosgriff.

Beatrice Kirchhoff, Georgina Crawford, Katie O’Gorman, Allyson Tippie-Rameker and Claire Scheidegger paid tribute to classmate Connor O’Gorman (97) by wearing wristbands inscribed with his initials. Connor, who was struck and killed by a car in NYC last April, was in their thoughts throughout the weekend. The armbands were reminders to live each day with Connor’s enthusiasm, passion and commitment.

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Notes & Quotes 1960s Ann Kesselring Hamon (60) just made her first connection with SAS since she graduated in 1960. She was known as Anita at SAS because when she was in 8th grade, there were 3 Ann’s in her class of 8 students! Ann and her husband recently retired as librarians and are living in Madison, WI. Their daughter and family live in CT. Ann has fond memories of SAS on Rochalie Drive, among which are having chemistry lab in the garage, soliciting ads for the yearbook and playing netball against local schools. Cliff Groen (64) retired this summer from the International Finance Corporation, part of the World Bank Group. He was with IFC for 16 years and practiced law in DC, Honolulu, Seoul, Tokyo and NY before that. Cliff and wife Marti had a lot of fun at the DC reunion, reconnecting with David Lissauer (63), Sheridan Phillips (63), Kristin Lundberg Searle (64), Johanna Teilmann Perry (64), Jim Baker (66), George Fitch (65), Russell Ng (67), Tom Lundy (67),

Ken Stoehrmann (68), Eileen Roulier (70) and others. Cliff and Marti are moving to New York City this year.

1970s Gretchen Fryer Kindrick (70) lives in Alabama. She loves her work as a midwife and has recently become funding/distribution director for the Montgomery Area Food Bank. She is a volunteer fire fighter/ paramedic and has finally admitted to being an adrenalin junkie. She and her husband of 35 years have 4 children (Jasmine, Laurel, Caleb, Camille) and 4 granddaughters. They are BIG Auburn University football fans. Gretchen is a member of Tallassee Street Artists, artists who display/sell their pieces at a local gallery. She would love to hear from SAS classmates! Nina Williams (74) and husband Mike sell agricultural chemicals and fertilizer and farm alfalfa, cotton, lettuce, melons and onions in Arizona. Nina’s parents live near Flagstaff. Nina still likes to travel outside the States. She keeps in touch with Debra

Ann Kesselring Hamon (60) sent pictures from the 50s for readers to identify: 1958/59 picture: Maybe both Methodist Hostel and oil company hostel kids. Back: June Williams, David Reinoehl,? Next row ??? Mrs. Williams (head of Methodist Hostel) Next row: Beth Teilmann, ?, Ann Kesselring, Sondra ?, Miss Chew, Gek Chew, driver (all from Methodist Hostel) Next row and front: ??

Welch’s (74) daughter, since Deb’s death from cancer, saying that her daughter is just like her. Julia Nickson (76) was in Singapore last spring to promote Dim Sum Funeral at the 22nd International Film Festival. Julia plays the tragic older sister in this Chinese American comedy-drama. Stanley Fields (76) is chairman of Climate Clean, a company driven by market-based solutions to climate change. Alex McCombs (77) and wife Feng Ao welcomed daughter Stella Ao on July 10 in Oakland, CA. Penelope Causey Kysiak (79) is a high school Spanish teacher in Texas, where she lives with her husband and two children. She recently published a children’s book, Be Cool, Follow Earth’s Rule. Bess Corbell Terhune (78) has combined all of the photos from the Class of 79, which was really the classes of 76-85, reunion on Facebook. “Friend” her and take a look. Katy Hayes Jordan (79) says “Because it seems as we get older that there is more interest and time for reunion-type gather-

Above: 1956/57 Methodist Hostel Kids in 1956/57. Back row left to right: Mrs. Joyce Foster, Ann Kesselring, Ronnie Argelander, Odetta ?, Mrs. Olin Stockwell (piano teacher); Front row: Jimmy Foss, Marian Foster, Paul Haines, Beth Teilmann, Carl Foss, Dorothy Foster. If you can identify any of the missing people in these two pictures, email alumni@sas.edu.sg.

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Notes & Quotes

Remembering great SAS basketball teams at the 60s & 70s reunion in Washington, DC: Jim Ramsak (74), Sam Brodland (75), Coach Jim Baker (66), Tom Seay (74), Craig Friske (74).

70s mini-reunion on July 5, at Kona Brewing Company, a restaurant in Hawaii Kai on Oahu: Uwe Kumbroch (76), Arnie Yew (80), Julia Nickson (76), Jim Koyama (77), Rainer Kumbroch (77) and Denise Mills (76).

Stacie Sadler Callaghan (88) and husband Mark welcomed daughter Shelby June 20 in San Jose, California.

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Notes & Quotes ings, I have decided that every other year I am going to do an informal Same Time/ Same Place Gathering in Houston. There will not be any pre-planned events, just 34 days of being together. I am setting it for June 17-20 and will have more info on the SAS Alumni site as the time gets closer. I have already signed the hotel contract for 2010, so put it on your calendars.”

1980s Bo Prichard (82) is an emergency medical technician at NASA. He couldn’t make the 79 reunion in Houston so they had a conversation with him on a cell phone passed around the pool. Karen Studebaker says, “We missed you, Bo! Next time we’ll ask Katy to coordinate the reunion schedule with NASA!” Scott Weinhold (85) began a new job in Tokyo in August as director of the U.S. Department of State’s East Asia and Pacific media hub. Scott’s 3 sons are 7, 10 and 12 and growing quickly. Carol Pernikar (89) moved to Bangkok in

Nik Adams (96) and wife Ygraine welcomed baby daughter Eliana Mae Adams in September 08.

June to work with her former employer, Arc Worldwide/Leo Burnett, as their regional director of shopper marketing for the P&G client focusing on ASEAN markets.

1990s Anne Aiello Akin (92) and husband Chris welcomed Julia Aiello Akin on August 25. Chris Wilson (93) and wife Wendy Kao Wilson welcomed Liam Gregory Wilson on July 29. Heather Brown Hopkins (95) welcomed Elliot Samuel in December 08. Heather has started a charity called My New Red Shoes, which helps Bay Area students. Vicki Rameker Rogers (95) and Matt Rogers (95) welcomed son Kasey Champlin, born in March at Thomson Medical Center, Singapore. Alison Smith (97) married Dan Garen October 3 in Cleveland, Ohio. They live in Bala Cynwyd, PA. Sveta Srinivasan (97) married Joe Doucet May 24. The couple lives in New York City. Godart van Gendt (98) has moved back to Singapore to study for a year at INSEAD.

After, he’ll be looking for a job in the region. Girlfriend Susanne Nutbey has joined him and is working at the NUS oncology day care center. Melanie Moraza (98) married Drew Ogle in Baltimore on July 18. Jennifer Jackson (99) was maid-of-honor. The couple lives in Maryland where Melanie works as an employee assistance counselor and Drew as a software engineer. Kartini Shastry (98), an economics professor at the University of Virginia, gave a presentation at a Federal Reserve-organized conference in Washington, D.C. on financial literacy training in high school. The presentation was aired on CSPAN. Kern Lee (99) married Adelaine Manzano on August 10 in Singapore.

2000s Anita Krishnan (02) works for the Peace Corps in Paraguay. Anish Jain (02) climbed Mount Kilimanjaro with several of his colleagues at Temasek Holdings in July. The team raised SGD$325,000 for the Make-a-Wish Foundation in Singapore.

Michael Crocombe (80) and family live in Australia.

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Notes & Quotes

Jennifer Schilhab Schultz (93) and her husband Stuart welcomed Gavin MacGregor Schultz on June 23.

Sunny Stevens (80) married Stuart Napier on August 15 in Austin, Texas. Buddy Byington (81) introduced Sunny and Stuart after the Class of 79 20-year reunion in 1999. The couple is pictured with their mothers at the wedding ceremony.

Rob Livingston (87) and wife Jeannie welcomed Jack Woods Livingston, born at Mt. Elizabeth Hospital in Singapore on February 10. Jack’s big brother Will is an SAS pre-schooler, and sister Madeline is a kindergartener at SAS this year.

Jackie Hilimon Denzel (01) and her husband Kurt had a baby boy, Brendan John Denzel, on March 27 in Buffalo, NY.

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Notes & Quotes Jamie Presnail (03) and his wife Callista welcomed their first child, Skyla Rain Prosser-Presnail on March 3. Jamie started his own business in the golf industry this year; see www.demoinventory.com. John Taylor (03) married Amanda Boynton in May 2009. They honeymooned in Bali and stopped by Singapore on their way home to Houston, where John works for an oil company and Amanda works for a nonprofit animal welfare organization. Megan Waugh Bloem (04) and Jordan Bloem (04) are currently teaching English in a small village outside Qingdao, China. Vrinda Manglik (04) participated in a 180mile bike ride over Labor Day weekend to support the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador (CISPES), which addresses U.S. economic, political and military intervention in El Salvador. In 2005 Vrinda travelled to Nicaragua with “Community Partnerships” at Sarah Lawrence, where she learned about CISPES. Vikram Sohonie (04) and Clarissa Cavalheiro (04) are both working at

Reuters News Service in Singapore. Vik is a pictures desk sub-editor and Clarissa is a magazine desk sub-editor. Clarissa learned about the job opening from Senior Photo Editor Mike Fiala (80). Lauren Gaylord (05) graduated May 09 with a B.F.A. in Art History from the Savannah College of Art and Design. Lauren joined the University of Utrecht’s research masters program beginning in the fall. The program focuses on original research and scholarship on Dutch and Flemish art. She will be living near her mother Suzanne, a former first grade teacher at SAS (00-05), who lives in Germany. Sandra Yili Pang (05) graduated from RMIT University in Melbourne in Dec 08 with a bachelor’s in games graphics design. She freelanced for a while in multimedia design and photography but is now studying for a master’s in multimedia design at Monash University. Patricia Crystal (05) and Brian Linton (05) work together in Brian’s company Sand Shack, an environmentally focused com-

Johanna Mitchell (97) married Douglas Frauenberger on April 18 in Mexico. They met at MIT Sloan School of Management and currently reside in Washington, DC.

pany that sells hats, flip flops and jewelry and gives 5% of the proceeds to ocean conservation. Chi-Chi Lin (08) and Renuka Agarwal (08) completed their first marathons in Kuala Lumpur in June 09. Camille Beinhorn (08) spent a year dabbling in a little bit of everything. She learned scuba, memorized species of fish and mapped two uncharted coral reefs in Tanzania; lived in a beach hut without electricity; played polo in Mongolia; trained horses; and road-tripped across South America. “It sounds a bit random given my academic interests, but it was important to experience something that I would not have the opportunity to if I just stayed in the art, history or soft science realm.” Amber Bang (08) received college credit for a year-long writing and travel program. The first semester she and 8 other students learned Spanish in homestays throughout South America; the second semester she taught English, then travelled to Ghana to work at a hospital.

Nicole Koch Kirklin (97) and husband Adam welcomed Benjamin Webster Kirklin on February 11. Nicole is program manager for the Cardiac Transplant Research Database in the Department of Surgery at the University of Alabama.

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Notes & Quotes

Billy Jackson (98), the founder of AdventureJourney.net, is supporting his brother Joey (02) (above) in a 20,000 mile overland expedition through Asia to raise funds for life-changing surgeries carried out by Deseret International Foundation. If you’d like to follow Joey’s progress, look at his phenomenal travel photos or donate, see adventurejourney.net/expedition/20000.

Anne Dodge (03) married Crew Carroll twice this spring: on March 20 the couple held a legal ceremony in Singapore, officiated by Dr. Lee Suan Yew, father of Shaun and Kern Lee (99). Two days later they said their vows in Phuket. Both are primary school teachers at SAS. Anne’s parents, SAS third grade teacher Jane Dodge and former SAS teacher Bob Dodge, are pictured with the couple in Phuket.

Kim Grimes (00) married David McKenzie on August 8 in Norfolk, CT. Kim’s sister Robin (02) was maid of honor. Kim completed a MA in education and is certified to teach K-6. She has a BA in fine art from Rochester Institute of Technology, where she met David while working for Campus Safety.

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Notes & Quotes

In May, 12 former, current and future varsity cross country captains met on the SAS track for an early morning run to recapture the spirit of the Wednesday morning training sessions that are integral parts of the cross country program. Cross country coaches Ian Coppell and Paul Terrile were present and were pleased to realize that former SAS athletes are still running. The runners celebrated the short workout and reunion with a big breakfast in the school cafeteria. It is hoped that a similar run will take place in late May/early June 2010, which will be open to all past, present and future SAS runners. Contact Coach Coppell (icoppell@sas.edu.sg) if you want to be informed of future SAS cross country events. In the photo are Thomas Rees (10), Evan Shawler (09), Brian Robertson (09), Sunny Han (08), Chi-Chi Lin (08), Doug Chu (06), Warren Ho (07), Renuka Agarwal (08), Brooke McManigal (10), Avery Shawler (09), April Lesiuk (09), Lauren Betts (10).

Former Faculty Mel and Rosemary Farmer celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on June 11, 2009. Bobbi Laguna (Ulu Pandan 81-92) writes that her French classes are more popular than her Spanish classes. She feels fortunate to have landed in Phoenix and finds it a dynamic place. She loves the diversity, which she feels rivals that of Singapore and Hawaii, and says that “food from every corner of the globe is available.” Son Arty (91), wife Michelle and grand-dog Alex love their jobs, the people with whom they work and their location just northwest of Chicago. Bob Wolpert (teacher 72-75) wishes all in the SAS family good health and high spirits, and says It is hard to imagine that 34 years have passed since he “experienced

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Jacob Massobrio (08), who always had a guitar handy in Mr Ho’s caf, is looking for a music conservatory to continue his studies. He is currently composing songs in South America and will perform for tourists there next summer. Evan Shawler (09) finished Basic Cadet Training at the United States Air Force Academy this summer, and was awarded the “outstanding basic award.” Dominique Wilson Smith (09) said, “While waiting to head off to university in the next few weeks, I’ve suddenly been bitten by the alumni pride bug. I just can’t get enough of going back to school, visiting my old teachers, popping my head into my counselor’s office, wandering the campus nostalgically. During my senior year, I couldn’t wait to graduate, but now that I’m leaving, I realized that I’m going to miss SAS.”

2010s Emma De Caro (11) is a junior at Lake Travis High School. She writes, “I attended SAS 01-03. My fondest memories include our music unit on Indonesian music with Mrs Overlee and Ms Cain, UN Day, taking a field trip to Clarke Quay and the delicious cinnamon rolls from the cafeteria. All the teachers and students were great to be around and I think about my SAS experience almost every day. Go geckos!” Asia Rutledge (19), daughter of Gregory (78) and Susan Studebaker-Rutledge (80), wore her school uniform at the 30th reunion in Houston. Asia is now in grade 3 at SAS. She wore it, “to show the alums that it is MY school too!”

the joy and wonder of Individually Guided Education at Ulu Pandan campus, working with such wonderful people as Ted Gehrman, and Dave and Jean McKeen and Bonnie Leister.” He has been teaching in Jenkintown, PA since 01. His wife Oksana is a professor of mathematics at Drexel University, where son Peter is a student. His other son Thomas is 6. Bob writes, “My time at the Singapore American School continued a life-long interest in exploring and discovering. What a glorious time of looking and learning my life has been!” Former Superintendent Bob Gross (9907) and his wife Judy enjoyed a trip to Hawaii this summer. They sent everyone best wishes for another successful school year.

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Reunions

Class of 2004 Reunion

About 30 alumni gathered to celebrate their years at SAS over Labor Day weekend. They met up at Stone Creek Bar and Lounge for Tiger beer and videos and slides of their high school years and about their lives since graduation. Later, at a karaoke bar, they sang “bad songs from Aerosmith (I don’t wanna miss a thing), Spice Girls (Wannabe) and Backstreet Boys (I want it that way).” Says Steph Yiu, “It was hilarious, entertaining and fun. Lots of dancing and laughing.” Pictured are (front) Erin Quassa, Michelle Simpson, Jake Emerson, Philip Finch, Sid Rao (organizer), Ryan Flavell; (back) Kristen Spatz, Nicole DeFord, Laura Codron, Kenny Roche, unknown, Kelly Malina, Scott Greene, Marisa Robertson, Chris Wong, Matt MacNelly, Alysha Kett, Sarah Murray, Katie Gunter, Silvia Bernardini, Steph Yiu, Goldie Chow, Sasha Salek, Miko Mercer.

Upcoming Reunions Young Alums (99-09): December 17, 2009, Union Bar, American Club, Singapore, Hosted by the Singapore American School Classes of the late 70s & early 80s: June 17-20, 2010, Houston, Katy Hayes Jordan (79) SAS Semi-Annual Reunion/Class of 1990 20-year Reunion, July 24, 2010, Las Vegas, Kelly Johns Barrios/Nathalie Vo-Ta Antus Information on all reunions: alumni.sas.edu.sg

Send your news and photos for the June 2010 issue of SAS Journeys to alumni@sas.edu.sg. If you want to communicate with SAS classmates or teachers, you may register with other alumni at http://alumni.sas.edu.sg.

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Educating children since 1956

SAS Journeys is published by the SAS Office of Communications and Development 40 Woodlands Street 41 Singapore 738547 Tel: (65) 6363-3403 Fax: (65) 6363-3408 www.sas.edu.sg journeys@sas.edu.sg

SAS Cover Vol 7

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Singapore American School Journeys December 2009, Volume 7