Friday, August 24, 2012

Eid 2012

Eid this year felt different from previous years. Everyone seemed more mature in thoughts, more patient with faults and flaws. More analytical too, it seems. Overheard from my bedroom my brothers and sister giving Mama an analysis of herself based on their observations. I later joined them to balance out their viewpoints. Bottomline: Each of us are unique individuals with our own unique strengths and flaws. We're meant to complement each other, not to make the other be like us.

Mama turns 60 in a week's time and she has hinted that she wants a gift - something that hasnt happened for a very long time. The last gift I bought her was an eraser from the school bookshop - it was designed like a lipstick and smells like strawberry. I really thought she'd like it - me being a little kid buying something for someone. But to my surprise, and disappointment, I was scolded for wasting my money. On hindsight, looking at myself now, I mustve been traumatised by the way she reacted and never bought her anything for her birthday (as well as anybody else's).

She added that since all of her children are all working full-time or part-time, we could get her something for her 60th.

I wonder what we should get, and how much it should cost. A couple days back, she did say that she liked the swarovski bracelet my aunt was wearing. hmm.

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Deeper Conversation

"Bro, I've a friend who asked me to help her to ..."

And immediately I know where the conversation will head to for the next 15 minutes.

"She's my friend from secondary school. Likes to keep a low profile. A good person. And I'm asking you first."

In my heart, I wondered if this was how I'll be introduced to my future special someone. Funny how conversations during occasional gathering of friends slowly evolve. One asked if we've actually done calculations as to how much money is required for marriage in Singapore - the majlis, the hantaran, gifts, the ring, getting a flat, savings to renovate and furnish that flat and so on. Such high activation energy. I tried to do a quick mental sums but some values are unknown to me - like how would I know how much a ring would cost me or what's the current "market rate" for hantaran. From the couple of Facebook pictures shown to me, she does seem to fall in my definition of nice.

"Ali, you look deep in thoughts. What are you thinking about?"

I didn't know people could see me thinking.

"So how? Interested tak?"

How, he asks? I could write a hundred pages and still not know how it's supposed to be like. At the moment, I've got nothing to offer anyone except my dreams. Committing to someone - even if it's just at the introduction stage - would be a tremendous commitment to make. It's one that I'm mentally, emotionally, financially and spiritually not ready for. Not yet, and I do not know for sure when I'll be ready.

Seeing many of my friends go in and out of relationships ever since my secondary school days, I sometimes do wonder how they do it. Don't hearts get broken when the relationship fails? Do hearts really get stronger after such an episode? Gotta think of a reply fast, I reminded myself.

I smiled. "At the moment I'm not really ready yet."

But I'm honoured that I'm the first person that came to mind. You must've seen something within me that I myself could not. I hope one day I'll wake up and realize what I need to realize.

"Ah, the food's here. So tell me, how's work?" Smiles and changes the topic.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

The grass is green on your side too.

Work ended today with a conversation between me and 4 Bangladeshi workers. We talked about work hours, fasting, and eventually (their) salary. One asked about mine but I managed to skirt around that question.

Talking to them makes me wonder if its fair for them to be paid as such. It makes me wonder how much of my salary and future bonuses belong to these workers who break their back and breathe bad air just so that deadlines can be met.

Why is life so unbalanced? As I stand on my patch of green grass, I cant help but wonder what I can do to make the dry grass of these individual green once more. Coz clearly, life isnt supposed to be like this.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

All psyched up

Every day is a test of my ability to stay optimistic. 

Sometimes I tell myself that I'm in this to learn. Bersusah-susah dahulu, bersenang-senang kemudian. Work hard early on so that later on, life becomes easier. Sometimes I tell myself that I'm doing this for my family - I've been on the receiving end for the past four years and it's my turn to give back.
And sometimes, I tell myself that I'm doing this for my imaginary kids. At the moment, I'm working 6 days a week without much complain in the hopes that my struggles will take me one step closer to seeing them.  

And the cycle repeats itself. Week 8.