Barbara didn't want me to call her directly at her home. I had to phone one of our Chinese girlfriends first and she would phone Barbara. The girlfriend phoned me again at my parents house and tell me what Barbara had said. The girlfriend talked first in Chinese with Barbara. That way her mother wouldn't get suspicious as they talked Chinese. But when they talked about me, they spoke in English. Her mother wouldn't understand it.
This way of communication could be quite tiresome especially when we wanted to get something organized. One time we tried to get Barbara free for an evening to come along to a party. We phoned in the afternoon. I was playing tennis in the garden with my father at that time. Every time we had to stop the game because the Chinese girl-friend phoned with messages from Barbara. My brother answered the phone, and every time he had to walk from the phone to the tennis court, passing me the message. I gave him my answer and off he went again to tell my answer to the Chinese girlfriend. This time my brother enjoyed being a communicator but my father had enough and got annoyed. That way I won the match. Still it wasn't the result I wanted, Barbara wasn't allowed to go.
Barbara was very creative in finding ways to see me. Not only by using friends to vouch for her or phone her. She did all the paperwork at home, also the administration for the school. Her mother just believed her when she said when the holidays started and finished. She told her mother other dates than the real holiday dates. Once it went wrong, in 1979. Barbara was in Holland with me. Although the colleges had started again, she had told her mother that it was still holiday. Unfortunately the school phoned her mother asking why Barbara hadn't turned up. This was the only time Barbara's mother phoned to Holland. It wasn't a very pleasant conversation they had. The following day Barbara left immediately for London.
Although we saw each other every day at school during the week we also wanted to see each other in the weekends. Saturday afternoon or Sunday afternoon were possible if we organized things well. Barbara tried all kinds of excuses to get away from her family these afternoons. As long as her excuses were related with schoolwork or seeing Chinese friends her mother wouldn't object. Most of the time Barbara told her mother that she was going to draw some flowers in the Botanic garden, or that she was meeting Chinese friends in the town centre of Cambridge to do some shopping.
On Friday before she went home Barbara would tell me where she was going to try to be that weekend. I went to these places and just waited. At lot of my time in the weekends was spend on waiting for Barbara. This was very frustrating as it was never certain if Barbara would turn up. She couldn't promise beforehand if she was allowed to go. How longer I had to wait how more annoyed I got. Thinking I could have been playing football now or done all those other things my friends. Still, every time again I went to there and waited. But when Barbara did turn up, the moment she saw me she smiled (I think many fans recognize or can imagine that smile) and all my inner anger would disappeared immediately.
translated by Elbc2006
(translated from simplified Chinese by Chan Chi Chung Andy)