Big Pond

Chin Mee Moi

I was born and brought up in the rubber estates. My parents came from
China in the early years to look for a better life.

With no other skills, they ended up as rubber tappers. Life as a rubber
tapper was tough. My mother had to wake up at 4.30am, cook simple
food to bring to work as well as for the children. My parents would start
their work at around 5.30am. with a candle tied to their heads, they
moved from tree to tree.

With dim, flickering candle light, they would carefully tap and remove a
stripe of bark from each rubber tree to enable the latex to spring out from 
the glands and flow into the cup

We, as children of rubber tappers, grew up among the rubber trees, waking
up early to help our parents, colleting around rubber scraps from the cups, 
running around with sleppy and barely opened eyes

Being the sixht daughter among the ten children, I was lucky to be able to
attend school. Hard work, endurance, determination and with a bit of luck,
I was able to make my way to the university

As an educator, I have never forgotten those good old days in the rubber
estates. Despite the tough moments, we still enjoyed our childhood:
climbing trees, collecting rubber seeds, catching fish in the river and ect.
Those were the days - poor, yet full of sweet memories

My days have always been with these trees and I shall always remain as
a child of the nature. I cherish my childhood life and I shall always remember
my late parents and their favorite quote : "child, you were raised up by these
rubber trees, you greew up by dringking latex..." DEDICATED TO MY LATE PARENTS