MY LIFE (same as Early NZ Years)
This page and and the following pages contain a fairly comprehensive account of my life. It all began in Gisborne, New Zealand. After graduating from secondary school, I went to the University at Wellington where I obtained degrees in chemistry. I then moved to Christchurch for teacher training and then teaching in a local secondary school.
A map of New Zealand showing the key cities where I lived
After five years in Christchurch, I went to Hong Kong to teach in a newly-established secondary school. This was supposed to have been for just two years but I am still there!
The story of my life consists of six parts:
1. The Gisborne Years (1940 - 1957)
2. The Later New Zealand Years (1958 - 1966)
3. The Early Hong Kong Years (1967 - 1977)
4. The Middle Hong Kong Years (1977 - 1985)
5. The Later Hong Kong Years (1985 - 2000)
6. Retirement Years (2000+)
The first part, dealing with my life in Gisborne, is on this web page. The other parts are on subsequent web pages as indicated on the navigation bar above.
Instead of using the six pages of my life on this website, you might like to go directly to another website which contains all the files here plus some that are not included. This website is entitled 'AUTOBIOGRAPHY' and can be found by clicking on the link below:
THE GISBORNE YEARS: The early years
Me, at the age of 1 year & 10 months at Waikanae Beach in Gisborne; the beach was an important part of my life during the summers.
Life History File
Here is an account of the early years in Gisborne. On clicking, it will open in a new tab:
Alternatively, you may like the file to open in the file viewer at the bottom of the page. If so, click on the link here.
Baby and pre-school years
Here is a copy of my birth certificate together with photos of my early years in Gisborne. On clicking, they will open in a new tab:
Birth certificate:Birth certificate
A few photos of my baby and early years:Photos
Here is the baby book that my mother kept:Rex's baby book
The same photos of my baby and early years as a slideshow (embedded with music to 'entertain' you):
Baby and early years (Vimeo). Password (if needed) = babyrex:
Primary school years
Here are my primary school reports:
Mangapapa School reports:School reports Same reports [Click on each image to open a report.]
Some class photos, fancy-dress ball pictures and the result of a Standard 2 writing competition:
THE GISBORNE YEARS: The later school years
Me with Dreyfus the cat ca. 1953
Life History File
Here is an account of the later years in Gisborne. On clicking, it will open in a new tab:The secondary years (1950 ~ 1957)
Intermediate school years
Here are my intermediate school reports:
School reports for Forms 1 and 2: School reports
Photos and Form 2 certificate: Intermediate school photos
Secondary school years
Here you can view my secondary school reports:
School reports for Forms 1 to 6A (Form 6A is now called Form 7):
Class photos and other photos: Photos, etc.
My Form 2 Science notebook:Form 2B Science notebook
My Form 3 Social Studies notebook:Social Studies notebook
A special section: My mother's recipe book
My mother used to do most of the cooking and baking for our household. Over time, she had a very large collection of recipes.
Click on the link below to see the categories of these recipes.
Another special section: War records
I was born during Word War II but grew up, perhaps naturally being in New Zealand, being unaware of it. Except at the end of the war, when a Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF) Lancaster bomber (similar to the one pictured, right) flew across our town in its circuit around the towns and cities of the country. We went up a hill behind our house to watch it. I can still remember this, though the memory is a blur rather than a clear image.
As I grew up, I learnt more about wars and how men in my family were involved. My mother's father went to South Africa at the age of 19 and fought in the Boer War. He survived. An uncle of my mother died at Messines Ridge in Belgium during World War I (memorial right with Nadine in picture). And a cousin of my father died, possibly on the infamous Burma Railway, though I am not completely sure about this. My father was a medic in the RNZAF (and based in Gisborne) but World War II ended before he could be sent overseas.
The links below provide pictures and information about these folks.
File and photo viewer
For photos, click a photo to enlarge it (and also to see the complete caption).