I never knew before that we can easily find upset and miserable people in mall, a place where it supposedly a happy place, like those executive property developers acclaimed.
And in the groceries there, I met an old woman, maybe 55 to early 60, with a wry face and squinted eyes, walked down the aisle of cleaning fluid by herself, pushed a shopping trolley without anyone else.
At first I thought that face shows pain, which is shocked me. An upset face, it’s quite common since so many people throwing money here in mall when some people don’t like that idea (for example, husbands who accompanying their wife). A doubtful face, so understandable with many people relying their income here to pay their miserable bills. But pain? In the face of an old woman who go shopping by herself? No, there’s must be something wrong with her that must be anticipated.
Feeling intrigued, I left my mother behind (she was too busy paid more attention to the price of cleaning fluids to realized that I’m not by her side anymore) and sneakingly followed her, aisle to aisle. Even to cashier, where I sat on the bench nearby while eyeing on her.
Turns out the face which I mistaken as a pain, is actually a sad face, a deep sadness. A face of sorrow and grief. That squinted eyes? Probably she has myopic eyes. I knew this because my eyes are both myopic and if I don’t wear my glasses on, I have to squint my eyes in order to have clearer sight. She didn’t wear glasses so it supposedly explain it all.
But what about that constant sorrow? It’s haunting me somehow. I nearly bump over her and ask what can I do or how could I help her because she looks so sad. But I may look like a freak stranger and might frightening her as well so I keep my mouth shut and walk in a required distance.
And in the end, I could do nothing more than observe.
I have a lecturer who appear emotionless. His jokes and sense of humour are the most dying thing in the whole world, his voice tone is like a flat line in heart pacemaker monitor, the one that everyone afraid of. I can’t guess what’s in his mind and yet I still predicting, but before I can scan him (like I able to do that), he gave us—the students—a surprise surprise!
I always wondering whether human can born that way, with flat expression and inability to express emotions. Or it just something that we learnt along the way?
Hence thinking about this, is it so painful to not being able to laugh when we’re happy, cry when we’re sad, get mad when we’re angry, thrilled when we’re afraid, scream when we’re surprised? Eventhough it can be overwhelming sometimes, they are all precious feelings, aren’t they?
Going out of home and meeting people becoming so fun since I started doing this.
Coward. Swirling. Comes gliding across the sky. Swim in the terrace. Knocking in. Bash the door.
Somehow a revelation. Awakening. Bright. Like a sun. Dancing. Shining. Shimmering.
The hope. The dreams. A good visualization in the head and mind. Flowing through the veins. Bringing all the life. Soul gets pumped. Energized.
I can’t really describe, nor giving example and illustration. It just…. something. Not losing nor gaining. Or maybe both losing and gaining.
I’m not talk in rhymes, not even trying. I just can’t figured out the order of the words. It’s messy right here. Everything is mixed. The colors blend into one. I’m blackout. Either full or blank. Or in between. Or none of those.
I listen to some songs. Not to facilitating the emotional conditions. Just needed some melodical tones. To make the colors less dark, to saturating. Merely as backsound. Eventho an unrelated backsound. The score director must be a worst one. I am the worst one.
Thus we catch the breath. Living in vacumm space. We scream, we light up. It’s undesirable, this kind of roaller coaster. All I can feel is just a banging head. Beating motion.
I’m in the middle of vertigo. Your eyes moves diagonally. Your voice draw a circular shape in the air. Try to catch it up, the hands grasp in between of tremors. I can’t, I said to you.
“I swear if Father was a Bandung Technology Institute alumnus, he might not living here in Indonesia anymore,” Mother said that evening while munching her dinner, “he would be in Germany by now, working for a big automotive company; or in Japan, be a part of world’s breakthough robotic projects; and would personally acquainted with Archandra Thahar as a felow alumnus, or might even be a friend of him as well!”
What she said is out of the current topic, actually, but then I saw my Father’s expression and immediately knew that his heart noted it.
My Father is a godfather for everything and anything mechanical, automotive, machinery, and engines, hence we are–Mother, me, my siblings, our big families and relatives–are all the same absolute mind with this.
He once said to me (when once I helped him repair TV just because I want to photograph the cute green PCB board) that ‘Machines, whatever they are and however they seems, are basically the same. They have a similar system and working methods. Once we understand how the fundamental system goes, we practically understand every each of them.”
It’s funny that I learnt electronics for three years in high school plus took electrochemical subject in my college, AND it results nothing, hence his words seemed invalid for me at the moment. I just practically think he mastered it not because the fundamental systems or blablabla, he mastered it because he born with that ability.
“Yea, agree! I mean, Father is not an alumni of any pretigious institutes but nothing he can’t do regarding any machines and electricities this far.” I approved Mother’s initial convo.
“Well, unfortunately I didn’t have such a privilege,” Father replied, giggled a little. “It would be great though, if once I had.” He finally agreed himself.
“If you once had it, nothing can beat you though!” Mother assured him. “Many of the so-called experts have a better life because they graduated from prestigious schools but you can even have similar skills like them. Think if you graduated from a similar institutes, compared to you, they would be NOTHING.”
Agree. I once watched a TV commercial that debating ‘talent vs hardwork’. It said that nothing called talent in this life. Everyone can do what they want and be an expert of anything if they worked so hard for it. Me, in the other side, absolutely disagree. I think talent is real. It’s a personallized gift that privileged by God to His creatures. If you don’t have the talent, you can work hard on something you want, but you’ll never exceed them who has talent plus work as hard as you, I believe.
“You know what,” Father said to me as a reply for Mother’s convincing statement, “even by now, I still regreting why I never took a higher school. I was born in a insufficient family and what’s on my young mind at that time was merely about how to paying my own bills and not being a burden for my parents.”
I knew this story, my parents both bornt at the time when the economical circumstances in this country was rather unstable, mainly because the unjustice regime that was ruled back those time. Compared to them, I was extremely lucky to born in the family where I don’t have to work or struggling with money to be able to have school days everyday.
“When I have this job, my current safe-and-assured civil job, I thought there’s no need to pursue a higher degree, but it proved me wrong. Higher degree wil always be a necessary.” Father continued. “Then my current office had once offered to send me to continuing my study in order of employer development program but some political issues happen in management ends, affected that I don’t get what promised to me. That’s the time I feel a real regret.
There it goes, my dear,” he looked at me, intensely, “school is important. It always is.”
I’m not replied, because that statement is no need to be replied as it is an absolute principle of me already. But I got another think:
Apparently when you’re getting older, you’ll be more regreting for something you didn’t do than the one you did.
Thanks Mother who brought up this topic and Father who continued it, now I got a solution for some of my current problems.