I never plan or expect to have this blog entry. This is for Doreen, a Singaporean teacher here in Dubai who is leaving for home after a brief stay at the international school my two girls are attending.
It was Monday, September 15, the girls first day of school. We were quite late in joining the school. The school term has started a couple of weeks before. As expected, things were not starting on the right foot. I was somewhat anxious if the girls would be able to fit in.
We arrived very early that morning - an hour before school began. As I tried to find my way to the girls' classrooms, a young lady walked up to me to introduce hereself and asked if she could help us. Completely disoriented, I was grateful for the kind offer.
So we started chatting as she walked us to the right rooms for each girl. I learned that she has been here only two weeks before. I imagined she must be disoriented and may be coping with culture shock herself. She explained the school to me, provided my first map and compass. Well this is just my shorthand way of explaining what she has done for us.
I met Doreen again two days later. I wanted to tell her about a mid-autumn gathering at the Singapore consul general villa that evening. She thanked me but told me that she would not be able to attend because she is flying home on Saturday. She has resigned. My heart sank. I have watched her from a distance looking out for the kids, directing them to the right places and I will always remember her smiling and patting my younger girl on her head and showing her the way to me.
Thank you Doreen for being so kind and caring. Thank you very much for the map and compass you gave me. Thank you for leaving heartprints in our lives.
Bon Voyage and all the best to you back in Singapore.