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  • Writer's picturePeter K F Cheung SBS

Good News from Tokyo

  1. FADE IN


  2. Act 1


  3. INT. BEDROOM - 09:00


  4. Waking up, PETER checks a digital clock.

  5. PETER (V.O.): I can sleep very well during quarantine.


  6. Peter looks out of the window and sees fine weather.


  7. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Last week, I checked the weather forecast and knew today would be fine.


  8. Pausing.


  9. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I meant to visit an outlying island today. Now, I've to remind myself I can't go anywhere.


  10. From the radio, we hear: Japan has today lifted its restrictions on foreign tourists.


  11. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Yes, I can visit Japan without a visa now.


  12. Pausing.


  13. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): But it's unlikely that my wife and I would go. And it's also uncertain if our elder daughter would return home.


  14. Act 2


  15. INT. SITTING ROOM - LATER


  16. Having done their RATs, Peter's WIFE begins working on her laptop while Peter on his smart phone.


  17. PETER (V.O.): Let me learn something by answering requests on Quora.


  18. Peter reads one: What is the main objective of Max Weber management theory, and how does it differ to Henri Foyal's management theory?

  19. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): OMG, I did decades of management without knowing these theories. It's time to catch up.


  20. Having done his research, Peter types his answer.


  21. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Max Weber pioneered bureaucracy, while Henri Foyal was the father of management. I didn't deviate from the norm or the practice.


  22. While disposing of requests swiftly, Peter stops at one.


  23. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): This question on power is framed in a convoluted way. But it reminds me of Hohfeld's four elements...


  24. Researching.


  25. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Power v Liability; Privilege v Immunity... the Hohfeldian Incidents named after Westley Hohfeld (1879-1918)...


  26. Calculating.


  27. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Oh, he died young, but left a jurisprudential legacy.


  28. INT. BEDROOM - LATER


  29. PETER (V.O.): Let me see if I can cook up some spoken Cantonese lyrics.


  30. Peter jots down some words on his phone notes.


  31. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): It's really hard to write rhymed and meaningful ones.


  32. Peter edits and edits.


  33. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Not perfect at all. Another dry run.


  34. Picking up a black and white electric bass guitar, Peter plays the bass lines of the oldie "Stand By Me".


  35. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): While playing them, I 'd learn to write simple but resonating riffs.


  36. Later, Peter picks up a flute to blow the theme melody of "Butterfly Lovers".


  37. FLASHBACK


  38. EXT. MUSIC DEPARTMENT, HKCU - DAY (1976)


  39. Car park. Waiting inside a metalic blue Ford Capri, Peter (22) hears someone practising flute and blowing "Butterfly Lovers".


  40. PETER (V.O.): Music to my ears! I wish I could also be a music student here.


  41. END FLASHBACK


  42. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): I'm having lots of hiccups - just a little bit better than yesterday.


  43. Resting and recalling.


  44. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Whenever I went to Tokyo before the pandemic, I liked to row in the lake in Ueno Park before flying home.


  45. Pausing.


  46. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Then, I didn't mind travelling alone. Now, I prefer to travel with my wife.


  47. Pausing.


  48. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Meanwhile, our elder daughter in Tokyo is still awaiting the result of her application to read Korean in Seoul National University (SNU).


  49. Pausing.


  50. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Workwise, she has already tendered her letter of resignation.


  51. Act 3


  52. INT. BEDROOM - 23:00


  53. Smiling, Peter works on his laptop.

  54. PETER (V.O.): Earlier, we've good news from Tokyo that SNU has asked our elder daughter to pay the tuition fees.


  55. Pausing.


  56. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): My children have passion and purpose. Struggling hard and smart, they've progress.


  57. Reflecting.


  58. PETER (V.O.) (Cont'd): Personal growth is focused on progress, not perfection. A little progress each day adds up to big results.


  59. The bedside digital clock displays "23:45".


  60. THE END

  61. .

  62. FADE OUT











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