|Martha L. Wason (nee Farnham)|
|My three years in Burma were from 1958-1961. I was a short-term missionary with the Methodist Church and my assignment was to be the Conference Music and Drama Teacher. Jeanne Wintringham was my predecessor at MEHS. She was assigned to teach at the school full-time and I am sure that many of you remember her. She is retired now and lives at: 266 Merrimon Ave., Asheville, N.C. 28801 USA.When I arrived in Burma, Dr. Frank Manton was the supervisor of my work, and after reviewing all the requests for my services, I ended up being the “travelling music teacher.” Sometimes I felt like I spent more time on the road than I did in the classroom. My only responsibilities at MEHS were leading a Singing Assembly at 8 a.m. on Monday morning, directing the music for the Christmas Pageant, and organizing a Girls’ Glee Club. The rest of my time was divided between the Burmese Meth. School on Creek St., the Chinese Meth. School, travelling to Twante, Syriam and Pegu on a regular basis and teaching at the Burma Divinity School in Insein. I also taught for one month out of each year at Kingswood School in Kalaw.
Before I left Burma in 1961, I was engaged to Dr. Irwin Wason, a physician with the Burmah Oil Co. He came to the States in July 1962 to specialize in Obstetrics and Gynecology and we were married 6 days after he arrived. We have made our home in Cleveland, OH. I taught music in the public schools for several years (until our third child was due) and then “retired” to raise our family. We have four children: Jeffrey, Berkeley, CA; Suzanne, Chicago, IL; Beth Nelson (mother of our only grandchild, Grace), Evansville, IN; Michael, Columbus, OH. I still give piano lessons, occasionally direct music at a local community theater, and do a lot of volunteer work. My husband is semi-retired – works 3 1/2 days a week – so we are able to take week-end trips and enjoy getting together with friends.
We made a trip to Yangon in Nov. of 1993. It was good to see family and old friends. We went to church at Meth. English the Sun. we were there. The school looks much the same except for the high wall dividing the church and school compounds. I have many fond memories of the Assemblies and Fun Fairs (Mr. Fuller and I did a radio commercial one year to advertise it). Miss Rhoda Linton and I directed a major Christmas Pageant in 1960 that depicted Christmas in many countries. I well-remember the endless rehearsals and music sessions in the church next door.
Martha Farnham Wason