Grandparents are the pillars of our families as they are reminders of our history and traditions, but we sometimes forget that they were once teenagers like us.
With the new school year starting, our junior reporters asked their grandparents questions that brought them back to school, and they responded with some wise advice.
1. What dreams did you have when you were young?
Many of the grandparents interviewed had childhood dreams they could not achieve when they were young.
Anson Ng spoke to her 70-year-old grandmother, Corina, who has spent her life in Hong Kong.
Corina shared: “When I was 12, I dreamed of being a fashion designer … I wanted to design clothes and dresses for myself which were unaffordable to buy from stores. However, my family did not have enough money for me to study fashion. Eventually, I gave up my dream. This is a regretful memory of my life.”
Top 10: What do you wish your parents had told you when you were younger?
Holly Wei’s grandma, Yan, born in Harbin and now living in Beijing and Singapore, passed her dream to her child.
The 62-year-old said: “My dream was to own a piano and be a dancer. While I was unable to achieve that dream, it was fulfilled through my daughter, who I was able to buy a piano for and send … to dance school.”
Holly Wei’s grandmother (right) dreamed of playing the piano and being a dancer when she was young. Photo: Handout
2. What struggles did you face when you were in school?
Valerie Chiu’s grandmother, Ying, who grew up in Hong Kong, answered: “I attended a school situated on the roof of a building, known as a rooftop school. The facilities were a bit shabby.”
“It was almost impossible to get