By Paul Loong
OK, we all recognize our old school in the photograph. This is where we got molded in our youthful years into the wise and wonderful people that we are today!
But wait: take another look at the picture.
See the footpath at the bottom-left corner? Notice how sharp a turn it makes as it tumbles down the steep hillside? Over the railing you can just see the dark chasm — known in Raimondian folklore as 猛鬼橋 — through which runs the mountain stream that is barely a trickle in dry weather but a roaring torrent in rainstorms.
I remember the thrill of running down the brookside footpath at break-neck speed, feeling the strain in my thighs as I leaned back against the force of gravity tipping me forward on the slope. Running with schoolmates chasing Matchbox-sized toy cars skittling down the storm gutter alongside the path: sleek, streamlined racers in bright red, yellow and green; blue roadsters with newfangled suspension wheels; silver sedans looking so hapless that they didn’t stand a chance. Some overturned and rolled, some flew right out of the speedway at the turn while the winners nailed the curves like bobsleds zooming just under the rim.
This is a fond memory from my Raimondi Days, now half a century old. I’m happy to discover that it is more than just a treasured recollection.
Some old schoolmates are still at it after all these years. They share videos of the state of repairs of the roadside speedway and exchange photos of their Matchbox racer collections on WhatsApp.
Not only that, but they have also tossed one another a challenge to a rematch in March: 三月帶架番嚟，猛鬼橋砌過。
Maybe participants will contribute a vignette to this blog on the Big Day?