Monday, April 06, 2009

why am i not a teacher when i really look like one, and why am i still not married

my friend lote came down to melaka over the weekend and made me go with her to a career talk at our old school. i had to sacrifice my saturday morning sleep-in for that (lote, u owe me beb!;))
we did this last year, but we were really2 late then so we didnt get to participate much.
this year, well, we were late again.. but they changed the format a bit this year, so we managed to sneak in later and sorta "contribute" and shared our experiences with the kids.
i guess the whole objective of the program, organized by the school alumni, is to help the kids from the graduating class decide on their future career paths and motivate them towards reaching the goals by excelling in their exams (spm) first.

so lote and me joined the "medicine" room, where the ex-students who have now become doctors, talk about the hows, whats and whys of being a doctor. like i said, we were late, so it was already towards the end of the 1st session, and no one knew who we were, which was fine by me, but imagine our surprise when one of the speakers said something and then turned directly to us and asked "right, cikgu?".
lote and me just looked at each other, and turned back at the speaker, sheepishly said "err..bukan.." and just sank into our seats.
this aint the 1st time people mistook us as teachers.. people seem to think we are, no matter where we are or what we do (by we, i mean me, lote and few of my other female doctor friends).. be it buying groceries, buying cake, having a facial, having a haircut, trying on shoes, EVEN when we're actually IN the hospital, and this happened to another friend,mawar, when she was explaining to a patient about a certain procedure in order to get the consent, the patient still referred to her as "cikgu"!!
there were exceptions of course, like when people mistake us for college students instead, or in my case, "so when are you taking your spm?", but then i guess i should be flattered huh?
seems like we're never able to get that "doctor-look" right.

back to the sessions,  we did get to introduce ourselves properly in the 2nd session, and talk to them about what the real hu-hah is about doctors (i was pretty sure we actually scared them off doing medicine than anything..heh).
a funny thing happened when i was introducing myself. as i was telling them i'm a medical officer, not yet a specialist, one of the girls asked "how old are you?".
so i answered "34" , and i could immediately hear one or two gasps from the audience.
then someone else asked "are you married?"
and when i answered "no", there was a much louder synchronous gasp from all of them!

i did all i could to compose myself (lote was taken aback by their reaction too, and almost fell out of her chair!) and then found myself actually explaining "'s got nuthin to do with becoming a doctor you know, it's just a matter of personal choice.."
and although i could see a few heads nodding, i'm not too sure they looked too convinced. o well..

later in the afternoon, they had a motivational talk, then a brief photo session, and lote and me left after that to watch a movie (fast & furious) where i fell heads over heels all over again for vin diesel.