Rantglass - because that's how things are.

Went shopping with my father...

Went shopping with my father today, down in the busy streets of congested and crowded city of Pudu. It was his weekly shopping trip, and I had to tag along because he would be bringing me to Bukit Bintang to get myself a manual camera for my studies. I will be learning photography for about two trimesters, and yeah – it’s another excuse to spend more of my parents’ money. sigh

Anyhow, we had just finished our shopping – mostly food stuff for cooking – vegetables and fruits. My father went to get the car while I stayed in front of the shopping centre with a full shopping cart. I stared blankly at the cars rushing by in front of me, and the black clouds that had gathered overhead, when a thin Chinese man scrutinised me from head to toe, and asked if I could give him some food.

I didn’t really know how to react. Deep in my heart, I did sympathise with him. I thought of giving him the few pears we bought – but what would my father say? He sat down and began cajoling me into giving him something to eat, that he was hungry, asking me not to have bad ideas about him, that he was harmless and would do nothing to me. He would ask me either for food, or for money so he could buy some food for himself. I didn’t really talk to him; I either nodded, or shook my head denoting negative to some questions he asked.

I felt so uncomfortable. All the while I kept stretching my neck to see when my father would arrive. Many thoughts and questions ran through my mind. Should I give in? Why can’t he work to earn money for himself? If I gave him something, would he walk away, or ask me for more? Would my father tell me off if I hand the man a pear or two?

To my relief, my father arrived, and the man proceeded to bug my father, while I tried to put everything into the car as fast as possible.

Eventually I saw my father paying him one ringgit. We didn’t talk about him while we were in the car. I didn’t tell him that he had been pestering me for food and money.

Pity and suspicion – two contrasting elements that played through my entire mind during the incident. I just hope that I won’t have to encounter such a thing again. It nearly freaked me out – me being alone, and helpless.

Perhaps I should have given the man something.

Perhaps I should get a job as a police officer one day, just so I can carry a gun around.

Perhaps I am heartless.

On air now: Flowers in the Window, Travis (The Invisible Band)

Details of this entry.Friday, May 10, 2002, filed under Blogger Archives.
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