Nostalgia from: A City Set Upon a Hill
In this sentimental memoir, Garfield Whyte takes readers down a wistful, thoughtful, and saccharine journey down memory lane in his book Nostalgia from: A City Set Upon A Hill. Set in the backdrops of Munro College, an all-boys boarding school in Jamaica, Whyte paints a literary tale of flashbacks of his fondest memory of his schooling and the significance and impact that this school bestowed upon. From the sights and sounds of the school, to the classrooms, the teachers and students, and the bricks that laid the foundation of this institution, Whyte explains why Munro, in all its simplicity during that time, was the city set upon a hill.
“There were other boarding schools in Jamaica, but none like this one. The others were duplications, as, in my view, this one was the real, authentic all boys’ high school.”
In this compound, Whyte retells of how their lives revolved around this institution. The outside world practically didn’t exist to them, because everything that they could want and needed was provided for. It was truly a city built upon a hill. It was a school that young boys aim to attend and parents hoped their child would be lucky enough to attend. You were considered lucky and fortunate to get accepted. As we read further into his memoir, we learn of his appreciation of the simple things like eating and water. The school taught him and other students to be thankful for the basic needs and in such it taught him discipline that could be used in his future life.
“Munro College was recognized as the only high school, and there was to be a one-way street that led up to that winding hillside to the city set upon a hill. After the Common Entrance Examination, my seven-year pilgrimage began.”
Each opening chapter in this memoir begins with a quote from a famous person whose quote leads into each topic Whyte introduces.
This memoir is his account of his life and recollection of his memories of the students and the people that he encountered while he was a student of Munro. Through this detailed account, Whyte allows us to FEEL Munro College and why, once you are a Munronian, you are a Munronian for life. While this memoir is of his personal account, I enjoyed this personal and sentimental journey of Garfield Whyte. So if you are ready to immerse and feel of what is like to be a Munronian, then this deep, wistful recollection of memories will allow you to taste, see, and feel Munro, the city on the hill.