the bus turns. i take out my EzLink card.
shall i walk home? havent run in 4 days. maybe i should walk. can i walk that distance?
i get off the bus.
maybe i should just take a bus home.
i cross the traffic light. left, bus stop. right, walk home. i turn right.
ok, im going to do this.
i smile to myself. i start walking.
i look to the right.
nice cranes with lights at night. “a college in the making”. hmmm… this is where KM will be teaching.
i walk on.
a sudden sound of a drainage lid being disturbed. i get a shock. a cyclist rides past me.
phew. what if i had been robbed?
i hug my paper bag and walk on.
i see a guy running.
how do i look when i run?
an lrt moves pass above me. i smile.
quiet. vehicles travelling in the background.
one step at a time.
i hear a siren. i turn to the back a few times.
a fire engine.
it stopped at the traffic light.
weird. why else would it sound the siren?
i look inside. 2 guys were putting on some head gear.
so cool. must be an exciting job, though difficult.
i once considered going for ambulance attachment with civil defense. nahh… too much testosterone.
i stop at the traffic light and look at the civil def truck a while more.
green man. i start walking.
almost reaching an lrt station. anothe siren sounds.
are they on some training session? there wasnt any smoke nearby. was i going to see an accident?
i walk on. bag on my right shoulder, paper bag on my left hand. i swing my paper bag and start humming some songs.
“waiting for a star to fall, and carry your heart into my arms, that is where you belong, in my arms baby yeah…..”
another traffic light.
i look to the right.
“big prawn noodles, $3 $4 $5” does the big describe the prawn or the bowl of noodles? haha... i kid myself.
another road crossing. i see a car stop.
i remember how to stop a car. i’ve been learning. i smile.
deep breath. its a cold night. and right now, this space belongs to me.
i might be marvellous, but im not marvellous enough to be The One.
this space is mine and i want to be happy.
i hum some tunes i make up on the spot. try to follow the beat of my steps.
at some point, the new tune turns into super mario bros theme.
where in the world did that come from!?
i laugh to myself.
downslope. finally. the lrt track showing a bend. i’m halfway there. i need to call home.
i dial the numbers and bring the phone to my ears.
quiet. sound of passing cars.
why did this morning feel like an NUS morning in 2002? i dont want to go thru that again.
i smile to myself. i must make a conscious effort to be happy.
i hang my hp pouch on my right hand and swing it. and my left hand with the paper bag. same time, same direction.
doesnt work. one heavy one light. sigh.
what if a train passes when i walk pass? hmmm….
sounds of entertainment on my left.
whats going on?
some singing. a see a little girl sway her hips drammatically.
what? she wants to become a getai singer?
awww stop the sarcarsm.
i laugh to myself.
finally at a major traffic light.
which ever light turns in my favour first. left.
i start crossing.
suddenly i hear the voice of a young indian girlbehind me. i recognise the accent. “appa appa appa” she called out… she just wanted to cross the road.
i reached the end and pressed the green man button.
oh, she wanted to press the button. sorry…
i focused on her voice. a 5 yr old girl, embracing her father’s leg, waiting to cross another road. happy with life as it was.
how many dreams would her father have, each time he looked at her. how many dreams would my father have had, from the day i was born. would i ever make him proud of me?
still a long way to go.
i cross the road.
i feel a cold breeze brush my face.
oh, what wouldnt i do to hold you now. deep breath.
wonder whats going on in there.
i see a family sitting at the coffee shop. laughing and chatting away.
bless them. and bless the girl i saw at the traffic light. i hope she makes her dad proud.
step. step. step. step.
i see the dog i always see when i pass by the hardware shop. its been over 9 yrs. i used to see the dog everyday when i went to nus. now i walk to the opposite side instead.
9 yrs is a lifetime for a dog. how long more does he have to live? even i would be sad to see the dog go. why cant certain things just last forever? why must things end? why cant good things go on for eternity?
smell of indian food is just so savouring. i smile.
best fish head curry, the newspaper says.
ive tasted better.
i turn left at the corner. satay smell. the kind you hate cos of the smoke, the kind you love cos of the bbq-ed meat.
who doesnt love satay and peanut sauce?
i walk on. reaching reality soon.
reach inside my bag for my assess card. tap it on the reader, push the gate open and enter my condo.
shut my mind. back to real life.
the long walk was peaceful and needed. my time, my space, my right.
i look at my watch. 9pm.
i should have taken the bus. but i have no regrets.
i see the audi lexus bmw parked in the carpark.
another 7 minutes, and im back at my doorstep.