Perth, Sep 30, 2010
Had dinner after library visit. The Chinese restaurant was surprisingly packed with Caucasians on this Thursday. We were the only Asian of vet students and me. I knew that the target clientele is non-Asian. I asked the young man (graduate) waiter. He said that the restaurant cooked to the taste of Caucasians. Prices are maybe 10%. The ambience was good. The restaurant was clean and homely. Food was surprisingly good and better than Singapore standards. Perth is a sprawling place and each suburb has its own shopping mall and restaurants and are located within a 5-minute drive. Competition must be greater than in Singapore as each suburb is small in population.
"You are her sparring partner," I said to the vet student. In Murdoch, each surgical team has 3 vet students. "Sparring partners?" the vet student furrowed her eyebrow and looked at me.
"I am using a boxing analogy," I explained to her. "You and the other student are of the same class and therefore I say you are her sparring partner. Now, if you were at the pits ie. bottom of the examination ranking, you will not be her sparring partner as one punch will knock you out. She will not bother to discuss any academic subjects with you since you would not be up to her standards."
I said: "It is important to get a sparring partner if one wants to excel as the punches from your sparring partner pushes you to your limit of endurance." It sounds too technical to this young girl.
"I can't measure to her standards," she said to me.
"It is your mindset that tells you that," I said. "When your mind defeats you, you have already lost the first round of boxing. The positive mindset is very important to a scholar or sportsman. If you think you can't win, you have already lost."
The girl was not convinced. She must have lost a few battles in her mind and soul and would be realistic.
"It is the date of graduation that will decide the winner," I said. "Many things can happen to your sparring partner and nobody can predict the future."
Changing the method of study may be one way. I can't advise further as self-motivation and the competitive spirit are in the DNA of a person. Much depends on the growing up years of the youth and the family nuturing. But a sparring partner of similar ability will push one to greater heights and win, if one has the positive mindset to do it. "Do your best," I said to her. But how to do it? I have no answer as I am not a training coach.
In Willeton, Australia, Thursday's supermarkets like Cole (except IGA supermarkets which open 7 days a week) close late to 9 pm.