Learning English through Drama

13



Dear Jane,

It’s been so long since I last saw you. Oh gosh, you have no idea how bad I have missed you. So how are you doing in Toronto? Is the neighbourhood there friendly or welcoming? Speaking of neighbourhood, I’ve got to tell you something.

 

Remember how we used to you know, just hang out and wander around Kwun Tong? Well it’s become the background of our latest school play “Where Did the Love Go?”, in which I was responsible for the leading role Candice. At first, I was surprised when I got the role since Candice was actually an old lady who had just returned to Hong Kong from England after decades of renovation in Kwun Tong. In a nutshell, I didn’t think I can relate to the role, seriously. With the contribution of the other characters like Eldon, Gabriel, Jennie and many others, the play has been successfully premiered.

 

Oh, I almost forgot what the play was about, oops! In the play, Candice returned to Hong Kong from England since she had been overseas for a time almost too long and she wanted to take a glimpse of the neighbourhood of her childhood before she missed her chance. But when she arrived at Kwun Tong, everything had changed and she could not recognize the place a bit. Though Candice was a little disappointed, she just wouldn’t give up (as persistent as you, haha!). So, she gave it a try and approached some locals for direction. Out of her imagination, the neighbourhood which was once warm and caring became cold-hearted and unwelcoming over time. Candice received rejections again and again.

 

Being the character who was constantly rejected, I couldn’t help suppressing the overwhelming negativity filling my heart and even cried a little when facing such treatment. Can you even imagine how rude and cruel the people were (though they were characters only)? How can you even bear the pain witnessing a helpless old lady, who just wanted to explore around where she used to live, being ignored over and over again? Maybe it was just a dramatic effect, but ugh, did the people have any sympathy? C’mon, be compassionate!

 

But then, I realized that I was too, one of the heartless people who I was angry with just now. Despite the fact that many people needed help in society, people nowadays are just unwilling to lend a helping hand. (Oh I feel so ashamed, don’t look at me.) Only after taking part of the play did I know how selfish and self-centred I have been. (The guilt is consuming me, please stop.) Putting oneself into other people’s shoes is important, isn’t it?

 

Looking over society nowadays, I found that I am not the only one who only thinks about herself. People of different ages, teenagers, adolescents, adults… I bet many of them turn a blind eye to others’ needs and would just walk by with folded arms. I know, I know, what others are doing may not be the right thing to do. Still, I am just telling you about my thoughts and opinions.

 

I guess the play was a wake-up call for me and the public, to remind us about the cold, icy atmosphere here and to encourage us to help others whenever we have an opportunity. People may not imagine how sad and helpless it would be for one to be ignored and rejected no matter how hard they try to ask for help, until witnessing a realistic scene in front of their eyes. Overall it was a great once-in-a-lifetime experience for me since I have learnt a lot from it.

 

How about you? Have you experienced any interesting things in or related to your neighbourhood? I’ll be more than glad to hear about it. Well, I guess it’s goodbye for now (Aww…). I am looking forward to hearing from you.

 

Best Wishes,

Chris