Two Encounters Highlighted Our Trip

Alfred Ho       ’72                Toronto

Creative writing was never my strong suit back at St. Mark's. I recall how Ms. Wu, Form 5 English teacher, red lined my compositions. Needless to say, it was not pretty. Thirty-five years later, after studying and working in Toronto, here I am trying to write an article for the St. Mark's alumni newsletter.

My wife, Peggy (黃少香) and I (何維基 both 1972 graduates) attended a conference in San Diego in October 2007. We took the opportunity to travel to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Salt Lake City and to the Grand Canyon while we were close by. We looked up St. Mark's alumni in Los Angeles and San Francisco.

In Los Angeles, we managed to track down William Lau ( 劉健興, 1972 graduate), also known as Professor Lau. We had not seen William for over thirty years. Coincidentally, Torontonians Dustin Fong ( 方錦全, 1972 graduate) and his wife were visiting Los Angeles at the same time. The five of us met for dinner and we reminisced over life at St. Mark's: skipping classes and playing mahjong at William's  house in Chai Wan, being picked on by the Chinese Literature teacher, spending time chaperoned by a teacher in Macau in the hound racing stadium, and being a member of the Hong Kong 50th Boy Scout and Photography Club.

William was an avid athlete representing Jupiter. His favorite sports included soccer, volleyball, basketball, and track and field. Another fond memory I recall is having spent many hours after classes playing basketball with William, Bill Chan ( 陳柱標 ) Mike Chan ( 陳柱光 ), Teresa Leung ( 梁瑞萍 ) and Panky Poon ( 潘秀雄 ) as we would not leave the school until the caretaker came to yell at us to go home.

William left Hong Kong in 1973 and obtained his Bachelor Degree in Plattsburgh, New York in 1976 with an extra (impressive) 30 credits. He evidently spent a lot more time hitting the books and less time on the basketball court. He has been a Researcher and Professor at Loma Linda University since graduating with a PhD in Biochemistry. Currently he leads a research team of more than 20 staff funded by the US government and corporate businesses. William can be reached at

From left to right, Alfred, Peggy, William,
Dustin, Angela

In San Francisco, we contacted Lulu Ma Po Chu. Lulu lived in Shek O, the same village where Peggy, my wife, grew up. Lulu's sister was my wife's rival at the Shek O public school. Although Lulu only studied Form 1 before she emigrated to San Francisco in the early seventies, she made a lasting impression at St. Mark's.  Lulu was also an avid athlete who represented Mercury in volleyball, basketball, swimming, and track and field. During our dinner together, she recalled the numerous events in which she participated at the annual swim meets. As she was just finishing the 50 m free style, for example, the announcer called her name to report to the next event's  starting block. She remembered how nicely the senior schoolmates treated her, not realizing the senior boys were eyeing her. One senior boy (whose name remains elusive) even presented her with a gift of a ping pong paddle autographed by a famous Chinese ping pong player in the seventies. Lulu is fond of memories from her days at St. Mark's.

Lulu is a proud mother of a daughter and a son and is enjoying life in San Francisco. She will be traveling to Hong Kong in December and would love to meet up with St. Mark's alumni. Lulu can be reached at

From left to right, Sam, Lulu, Peggy, Alfred

These two encounters with friends from high school highlighted our trip to the west coast. It was as if no time had passed since our time together at St. Mark's, save for thinning hair and a few extra pounds that have accumulated over the years.