Haolie dreamt of Oxford

Oxford represented a lot of things: the ultimate validation of my ego and my place in this world, an acknowledgement that my A level straight As was not just a random anomaly of success in a clustered littering of pathetic failures, and a break-out mobility from the average to a higher elitist plane of meritocratic status.

I felt strangely nothing when I got the rejection. I’ve already mourned the closed door since the final interview.

It is both amusing and painful that I’m that small percentage of people who get consistently rejected at the very last penultimate stage of elimination, having already sailed through everything.

First was the public service/foreign affairs scholarship which saw me through days upon days of interviews and assessments and selections right up to the most final of final interviews (there were two “final” consecutive board interviews which didn’t prove to be final), and then now Oxford. It is both painful and humiliating to know that one was within inches of biting into a forbidden fruit, not once but at least twice within a year.

Such an unfortunate series of ironic mediocrity could be attributed to either the cruel vicissitudes of fate and some higher power out there that likes toying with me or some fatal hamartia of my being that I’ve yet to be conscious of.

For the present, I shall have to be content with a smaller pursuit. And I have at least fulfilled an obligation to both family, teachers and friends that I owe a lot to, to audaciously attempt to reach for something greater, albeit at great disappointment.

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