偷相疑雲

我在英國讀書的時候﹐班裡有一個中國來的留學生H﹐他為了讓同學交流相片﹐便設了一個網站﹐把上課時他拍的照片放在那網站上﹐供同學瀏灠。我那次好奇進入他的網站看﹐卻意外地發現上面有兩張照片, 我非常熟悉﹐好像是我曾經拍過的。H在網站上還多謝班裡的另一位同學E向他提供那些照片。

img_2671.JPG img_2686.JPG

我把那兩張照片和我電腦裡的照片(我拍的是數碼照片﹐平常存在電腦裡)比對一下﹐發現那兩張照片﹐以肉眼判斷﹐和我拍的一模一樣﹐恰巧相片裡都有路人﹐那些路人無論是位置、大小也是和我的相片裡的一模一樣 (見上圖)。我和我的朋友就此事進行了討論﹐結論是那兩張放在H網站的照片不可能不是我拍的﹐因為如果要一個人隨機拍的一張照片的情景﹐和另一個人也是隨機拍的情景一模一樣﹐機會真是微乎其微的。

我之後問H﹐H說那些照片是E同學向他提供的﹐E還告訴他那些照片是自己拍的。我感到很奇怪﹐E同學從沒有跟我提起我的照片的事﹐她也從沒有問我拿照片﹐她是如何得到我的照片呢?我推測因為我發出的每一封電郵的下款都寫了我的網誌地址﹐而我的網誌載有我的相片﹐包括那兩張﹐而且我的網誌容許別人下載照片, E同學應該是從我的網誌下載了那兩張照片﹐然後又不知為何緣故﹐她把那些照片當成是她自己拍的﹐便交給H上載到H的網站上。

E同學是我也認識的同班同學﹐人看上去很友善﹐她本身是律師﹐為什麼會做出這種侵犯他人版權的行為﹐我也覺得莫名其妙。那兩張照片都是在校園裡拍的, 誰也拍得到, 她根本不需要我的照片。

想念你

img_7170.JPG 回到香港, 需要經常進出冷漠的高樓大廈、穿插在繁忙的街道上。我分外懷念英國的日子、你爽朗的笑聲、你我一起踏過的青草地 (見另文)。

你離開我之前寫給我和另一位朋友的電郵 (見), 我再三細讀, 對你的文學修養和優美的辭語, 我佩服不已, 對你給我的高度讚賞, 我愧不敢當。

你離開當晚是凌晨兩點, 我原以為你會給我 優惠”免我在天寒地凍的晚上給你送行, 那晚上你來電問我甚麼時間出門向你送行, 並且叫我不用擔心回程的安全問題, 因為屆時還會有其他送別的朋友跟我一起回來, 這時我才了解到你之前多次叫我跟你送行是認真的, 原來你是多麼看重我這位朋友。

電郵摘錄:

Please read after 1.50 am!   (此乃電郵標題, 原意要我在送別後才閱讀, 但我天生好奇, 又沒有耐性, 當然在收到後就立刻閱讀了

Dear  [另一朋友的名字, 已略去]and Nora,

 

Fare thee well!!! We will be separated by this vast sea of distance henceforth but neither heat nor frost nor thunder nor the darkest cloud of Norwich can take away our friendship and love. Geographically closer by birth but fate brought us all to flat land of Norwich to be friends and know each other.

To  [另一朋友的名字, 已略去]:

[內容已略]

To Nora:

{It was in 3rd week of September 2006, I saw one lady near the Security Lodge of UEA, with a kind look, seemingly stressed and lost in thought (later I realized that she was so unhappy with her Norfolk Terrace residence) walking very fast. Couple of days later, I was one among the 50-odd would-be-post-graduate students in law, seated in the Earlham Hall Lecture Theatre when this same lady walked in little late (as it turned out subsequently she seldom made it to the class on time), surveyed the room, futively glared at every face and finally settled down beside me. She later on introduced herself as “Nora Tam, from Hong Kong” and she went on to become my best friend during Norwich Law School days.}

So My Dearest Nora, (my last woman standing in UEA, haha), I cannot imagine my life without you in UEA. You practically become my mentor, advisor/lawyer, para-legal, personal secretary and so on to keep me going and you rescued me from the shell of my stupidity at times. I would have missed quite a bit of Law School activities had you not been around. Indeed such specie of friend is hard to come by in life. Your presence around me gave warmth and comfort, joy and cheer, love and affection, assurance and confidence. I owe you a lot. I enjoyed every moment of your company, be it: walking along the green, grassy grounds; sipping beer in the noisy pubs of Norwich; having lunch in the fulfilling Chinese restaurant (thanks to you. I realized that there are thousands of restaurants in Norwich); grabbing some ice-creams in the café; shopping in the Morrison; window-shopping in the City Centre; to partying in the Earlham Hall. I genuinely used to miss you so much when you were away. In fact, I still and will carry this patch of regret for not traveling with you and missing the beautiful places. Every moment of our togetherness is a stamp of mark to cherish the bygone memories and bring smiles when relived. I am deeply moved and touched by your love and care showered on me during my stay in UEA. You gave me force and energy to drive ahead my life in UEA. Conventionally it is believed that behind every successful man there is always a woman but in this case, even behind the stupid man like me, there is an intelligent and nice woman like you who practically chartered the course of my life in UEA. I am running out of words to express my sincere gratitude and thanks. It is hard to gauge the degree of generosity shown to me in time, space and money and you even compromised some of things in the process for me. During my last phase of UEA life, I practically dragged you almost every day to Union bar; many apologies for that. From this moment on, be assured that I will leave you in peace as far as bar is concerned.

Of course you used to get satisfaction by beating me in academic score as well as physical jogging. Didn’t you? (Just a joke). I would really mind if you did not turn up when I get my LLD from Cambridge. Remember that promise! (haha).

I wish you a very successful career in life.

To both of you:

Shakespeare said that ‘life is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing’ but I think our moments of togetherness have always brought smiles and joy not taught by Professors. I have very few friends in UEA and fewer so close like two of you and how blessed I am- with two angels around.

 

We certainly will meet again at one point of time in future. If you visit my part of the mountain-terrain, please drop me a message. I will be so pleased to receive you. But remember that ‘poor’ man from ‘poor country’ can extend only love and friendship and I might fail you in giving ‘comforts’. So you have to keep your expectation low in that regard.

So I bid farewell to both of you with tearful eyes, slurred speech and heavy heart. Now it is quite late night and if angels are sleeping, they certainly will weep in their dreams to see me leave you behind the wilderness of uncertain future stored in for us. Believe me I have never cried before while parting but with you two, it pains me to break away the inexplicable eternal-bonding that runs through bottom of my heart like a golden thread. Ahhh! I pray stars to hide their fires to cover my tears. Shakespeare also would have said ‘if we meet again, we will smile; otherwise this parting is well made’. But I would say ‘if we meet again we will relive our togetherness of UEA days, otherwise also, we will cherish our friendship’.

With tons of love. To be with you is to carry wonderful memories

 

在英國的中國留學生

img_7829.JPG 無論你在英國的哪所大學讀書﹐儘管那大學是位如何偏僻的地方﹐那裡總有很多中國學生﹐中國國內去的不少﹐也有台灣去的。

近年中國國內越來越多人有能力供子女出國留學﹐尤其在‘一個孩子’的政策下﹐很多父母都把所有積儲投資在他們的獨生孩子身上﹐因此不但國內來英國讀一年碩士課程的人多﹐來讀四年大學本科課程的人也漸漸多起來。海外生在英國要交海外生的學費﹐與當地學生學費相比貴很多﹐再加上英國物價高﹐在英國留學一年至少港幣二三十萬元﹐讀四年本科則更貴。雖然如此, 有部分國內來的學生﹐因為他們的父母很富有(當中不少是政府高官﹐收取了不少賄款), 他們會在英國駕駛開篷跑車﹐身穿名牌衣服﹐帶名牌手袋。

中國留學生中也有台灣來的﹐但人數通常比國內生少。雖然大家身處異鄉﹐也受過一定的高等教育﹐國內學生和台灣學生之間有時也會存在鴻溝。部份台灣人更拒絕承認他們是Chinese﹐對他們來說﹐Chinese 僅指國內來的人﹐台灣人是Taiwanese﹐而香港人也不是 Chinese﹐是Hong Kong people。我身為香港人﹐身份既中立又特殊﹐既與國內學生交朋友﹐也和台灣人混在一起。

有時我也會理解為什麼台灣人難跟國內人混在一起。以我的經驗為例﹐我就讀的大學有一個在校內已註冊的中國學生會, 成員幾乎全是國內學生。農曆新年﹐該中國學生會在學校辦大型春節晚會, 整個表演完全以中國國內政治思想出發﹐程序也具濃厚國內色彩﹐在晚會宣傳中國文化的環節﹐更指台灣是中國一部分﹐試問這種晚會, 這種中國學生會, 哪有台灣學生願意參加呢?台灣學生只好自己組成一個規模小很多的非正式聯誼會﹐自行在過節時辦一些聚會。

國內的留學生﹐有部份傾向對中國自視過高﹐例如, 他們認為沒有中國留學生在英國讀書﹐英國很多大學要關門﹝但為甚麼有這麼多中國人不在本國讀書而要爭著出國留學呢?﹞﹐又例如, 他們覺得美國大量回收國內生產的玩具並禁止國內玩具入口﹐只是以安全問題為借口﹐實際是一種政治手段﹝但為甚麼美國的大型玩具零售商會輕易做出回收貨物這種有害他們商譽的行為呢?﹞。

中國人以刻苦耐勞出名﹐但怕事的性格也是眾所週知﹐中國人在異地﹐讓人欺負總是不敢言﹐怕招惹麻煩﹐結果是你越懦弱﹐別人越要欺負你。在英國的中國留學生﹐有部份會做兼職賺取外快或生活費用﹐通常較容易找到的工便是在肯得基之類的快餐店工作。我有一個同班同學﹐就是在肯得基做兼職。他跟我說﹐英國當地的員工很懶惰﹐經常休息﹐走到餐廳外面聊天和抽煙﹐那個英國人的經理見此卻不出聲。不但如此﹐當地的員工還喜歡指手劃腳﹐要他做這做那﹐例如有次他就快下班的時候﹐當地的員工就叫他搬汽水﹐因為那些汽水很重﹐他們都不願意搬。我問他為甚麼不向上級投訴, 他解釋說經理是當地人, 會偏幫當地員工﹐他出聲也沒用。我真的很失望﹐我的那個同學是讀過法律的﹐是新一代受過高等教育的中國人,他打那份工又不是為生計﹐只是為賺外快﹐失了那份工也沒甚麼大不了, 但他還是那麼怕事, 不勇於爭取自己應有的權益, 他況且如此, 其他未受過高等教育的中國人不是更加會在異地被人欺負嗎?

有關英國人的趣事 (三)– 問好

img_7169.JPG 在英國﹐跟別人打招呼﹐通常會說“How are you?”(你好嗎?)。開始時我覺得這句問候語很神奇﹐因為跟中文的問候語 “你好”不同﹐問人“How are you?”就是問對方的情況﹐話題會很容易打開。

後來我對 “How are you?”有了更深的體會。那次我去做環保工作﹐見到幾位義工﹐他們見了我當然會問我 “How are you?” ﹐恰巧我之前的晚上遇上了宿舍的性騷擾﹐我便老實跟他們說:“我其實不好﹐我昨天剛遇上性騷擾﹐現正準備搬宿舍。 ”他們聽後﹐便一言不發。後來我和我的朋友說起這事﹐他也有類似的經驗﹐每當別人問他“How are you? ” ﹐如果他老實回答他不舒服或有甚麼問題﹐對方會立刻沒話說。似乎 “How are you? ”只是一種問候形式﹐卻沒有一點問候的意思的﹐你最好不要給些不好的答案。

後來我問了幾位英國人﹐他們告訴我﹐對於別人問他們 “How are you? ”﹐他們只有一種答案﹐就是 “我好或OK ”之類﹐不會有第二種答案。縱使他們的手之前一天給切斷了﹐也只會先說 “我好或OK ” 之類﹐然後才說他們的手之前一天給切斷了﹐跟著對方就會揶揄一番。我不得不佩服英國人的幽默﹐但對他們的虛偽也感到啼笑不得。

有關英國人的趣事 (二)– 下雨

img_7167.JPG 英國天氣變化很快﹐可以在十分鐘內由晴天變下大雨,然後再變回晴天﹐當然也可以是下一陣雨﹐又停一下﹐又下一陣﹐又停一下。對於下雨,英國男人(除了上了年紀的以外)都有個不成文的規矩 – 無論下多大的雨﹐他們也不會帶雨傘出門,也不會用傘(唯一例外的情況可能是他們要穿西裝去見工)。是否男人大丈夫﹐下雨不足懼?我曾問過好幾個英國男青年為什麼他們下雨也不用傘﹐有些會坦白承認用傘會被視為懦夫行為﹐有些則辯稱男人頭髮跟女人不同﹐他們頭髮短﹐濕了也沒所謂,因為會很快變乾(這邏輯有些問題﹐因為女人也有短髮的﹐但女的會用傘)。

        對我來說﹐男人不用傘﹐對我有些不便﹐有時我要出外,不肯定外面是否下著雨時﹐便向街下望﹐希望從有沒有行人舉傘來知道答案﹐如果那些行人是男的﹐他們則永不能給我答案。

        另一方面﹐據我觀察,英國出售的衣服很多都有兜帽,這應不是沒有原因的,下雨時英國人喜歡把兜帽戴上﹐用來”擋” 一下雨﹐寥勝於無, 奇怪的是不但女的會這樣做, 男人大丈夫也一樣。