In 1983 I went for a few weeks to London to stay at a friend's house. Once in London I felt this urge to see Barbara. I hadn't heard of her since we broke up and I was curious how she was getting on. I had no idea what I was going to do if I would see her and deep down something told me that I shouldn't do this. There was a great chance that I be very emotional by seeing her, and then what? Anyway I couldn't resist this urge. First I went to Barbara's house on Belsize avenue. There they told me that Barbara didn't live there anymore and they couldn't tell me where she lived now.

Then I went to the art college. It was summer break and there were no students. I was allowed to have a look around; one of the teachers recognized me. She was very kind and helpful. She told me that Barbara was a hard worker and was very good in the techniques but she was not very creative. That is why she didn't get a high degree. She also told me that she knew that Barbara was working as an assistant designer at an art studio in London. I can't remember the name of this studio. When I called them, they told me that Barbara wasn't working there anymore. They couldn't (or wouldn't) tell me where Barbara was working now.

There were no places in London where I could go to continue my search. So far I knew Barbara didn't have any friends in London (this reminded me again how lonely Barbara must have been in London).

The only thing left was to go the Fish and Chip in Histon. But I was certain that Barbara's family were never going to tell me where Barbara was. Also I was sure that they were also not going to pass a message if I left one for Barbara. Therefore this didn't seem like a sensible option. It seemed hat Barbara found a new place to live and had a new job. So I decided that she must be doing well and that she was happy now. (Which she probably was at that time). I let it go and stopped my search.

I had been in London for few days a year earlier, in the summer of 1982. I was doing a tour through England visiting my college friends throughout the country. Staying at their place for a few days, reminiscing the good old times at the university. I did seriously consider writing a letter to Barbara, asking her if I could stay at her place. But finally I decided not to do it. I was afraid I would fall in love again, wanting to stay with Barbara and then get homesick again (I was happy with my life in Holland and I didn't want to live in England). Basically I would be messing up my life and probably that of Barbara too. Looking back now, not keeping in contact, being afraid to interfere with each other lifes must have been the biggest mistake we made.

In 1984 I lived in London for a short while (a different love story). During that time I didn't go looking for Barbara again, I had closed this chapter of my life. The sour thing was that Kings college had no objection in me using their facilities for my study during that stay in London. The same college who had rejected my application in 1978 and thereby making Barbara's and my life a so much more difficult.

I found out now that in 1983 Barbara was in Holland doing a show. So far I know she didn't try to contact me at that time. I guess she had closed this chapter by then as well.



1983 寻找Barbara

1983年我去伦敦在朋友家里住了几个星期。一到伦敦,我有种想看看Barbara的冲动。 自从我们分手我就没有她的消息,我很好奇她过得怎么样。我也不知道我见到她会做什么,但是内心深处的某个东西告诉我我不能够那么做。很有可能我又会变得很感情用事,那然后又能怎样呢?无论如何我没能抑制这种冲动。我首先去了Barbara贝尔塞斯街( Belsize avenue)的家。人们告诉我她已经不住那里了,他们也说不清她住在那儿。

后来我去了艺术学院。 那时正值暑假,没有什么学生。我被允许四处走走,有一个老师认出了我。她人很好也很热心。她告诉我Barbara很用功,技巧上非常优秀,但不是很有创意。这也是为什么她没得高分数。她还告诉我Barbara在伦敦的一家艺术工作室担任助理设计师。我不记得这家公司的名称了。我给他们打了电话,他们告诉我Barbara已经不在那里工作了。他们不能或者不愿告诉我她在哪里。


最后的一个线索是西斯顿(Histon)的炸鱼薯条店。我可以肯定Barbara的家人是不会告诉我她在哪里,也不会替我给她带口信。这不是个可能的选择。我想到Barbara已经有了新的住地和新的工作,她一定活得还不错,她应该很快乐。(事实上那时的她可能确实很快乐。)我想就这样吧 ,放弃了寻找。

在前一年,即1982年的夏天,我也曾在伦敦小住过几天。我在英格兰各地旅游,看望我的大学同学,每到一处就在朋友家呆几天,让我回想起旧时的大学生活。我认真地考虑过给Barbara写一封信,问她可不可以借住在她那里。但我最终没有这样做。我害怕自己会再次爱上她,想和她在一起,然后又会想家(我很喜欢自己在荷兰的生活,我并不想住在英国。)基本上我会弄乱自己的生活,很可能也会把Barbara的生活弄乱。 现在回头看,没能够保持联系,害怕介入对方的生活,是我们犯的最大的错误。

1984年我也在伦敦住过一段(另一个"爱"的故事 )。我没有再找过Barbara. 我已经翻过了我人生的那一章。 我那时待在国王学院(Kings college),他们没有介意我在那里利用他们的设施学习,可气的是就是这所学校在1978年拒绝了我的入学申请,我和Barbara的生活也由此变得更加困难。

后来我了解到Barbara在1983年曾到荷兰演出,据我的了解,她那时没有联系过我。我想那时的 她也已经翻过了她人生的那一章。


(thanks to Natalie for the translation)



# Looking for Barbaraabc 2011-07-10 17:45
Rob, U are so good to Barbara.
It is heart-broken to see you all love each other so much BUT had to separate due to circumstances. I think if you have support from BARBARA's family (her mom), it would have been much easier. U could still continue & finish your studies in Holland (u guys visit each other during breaks).
*** I think it is very hard to marry someone when her family "couldn't care less about you ie. think you do not exist as a human being!).
>> U care for Barbara so deeply. Hey, my husband of almost 20 years never take that much trouble for me!!! HaHa.
>> Barbara put so much in her 1st. relationship that she "snapped" when her 2nd relationship with Kent Tong did not work out.
# Looking for Barbaraabc 2011-07-11 00:05
Rob, What studies/major did you do when you went back to Holland for the 6yr study. That sounds like a long study (Bachelor 4yrs & Master 2 yrs??)
>> Now that you almost finish telling your story, can you tell us what COURSE STUDY did you major in?

Thanks for your time
# RE: Looking for BarbaraRob 2011-07-11 10:05
I went to the Dutch university to do a masters in Biology. After that I continued studying in Business management and after that Information management. In between I also did Pedagogy and Didactics.
As you can see I liked being a student and having a student life.
# RE: Looking for BarbaraHey 2011-07-11 13:08
Wow Rob! I really envy you for enjoying your student life so much as though you were very old already at that time. I agree wholeheartedly that being a student was the best thing in life!
# RE: Looking for BarbaraBarfan 2011-08-31 04:55
"Basically I be messing up my life and probably that of Barbara. Looking back now, not keeping in contact, being afraid to interfere with each other lives, must have been the biggest mistake we made."

u were just too young. that's all. pity none of us can go back in time. but afterall u both had a wonderful time together. quite enough.
# RE: 45. Looking for Barbara 寻找 Barbara 1983APPLE 2013-06-19 05:30
# RE: 45. Looking for Barbara 寻找 Barbara 1983fans 2018-06-08 02:28
真想找不会找不到,找芭芭拉的女同学去问她母亲就行。你太不珍惜这么美好的感情了。 Really want to find will not find, find Barbara's female students to ask her mother on the line. You do not cherish such a good feeling.
# RE: 45. Looking for Barbara 寻找 Barbara 1983Sam Lau 2020-12-23 05:37
Hi Rob, aftering reading all your stories. I wondered what Barbara did during the year you guys split up? How was her life on her own when she was working as an assistant designer at the art studio. I guess before she left for HK, you are always on her mind since it is her first love also. Sometimes I wished that time can turn back and wished her stay in UK as I think the fast pace and high pressure acting industry in Hong Kong is not suitable for her when her heart is so delicate with feeling towards the one she loves. Her inner insecurity is just not fit to have a high profile bf like tong when is always surrounded by pretty actress ( also,
media like to make up other stories to attract more attention and more pressure on Barbara)

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