He was the patriarch. A gentle soul who was strict when he needed to be. I was loved. I was scolded. I was indulged. I was disciplined. Despite the distance, I received a card on every birthday – and a present every Christmas. No soul ever forgets what it feels like to love and be loved by another human being.
I spent so much time in UK as a kid that everyone (except me) seems to remember all my childhood antics and habits. Yes – I really did eat food from the altar whilst grandma was praying. And yes – I really did spit out my pacifier whenever it was dinnertime. I see the look of confusion on my relatives’ faces as they walk through the door – a look that morphs into familiar recognition once I utter my name and remind them whose kid I am. After a good 13 years, I am back in England. Although it’s been that long – it feels like I never left.
But what is the white rose? Why does it exist? And why does it continue to exist even after Death has left its mark? Perhaps it’s a reminder of purity – that even after all those transient life experiences – there’s a part of us that remains forever untouched.
A wanderer’s life is a one of perpetual transition. I find myself constantly shifting between lives – letting go, letting in, holding on. Some people I want to hold onto, but life’s forcing me to let go. Some stories lay open and unfinished – leaving me wondering if I’ll get to write another page someday. Other tales survive life’s hard tests of time and distance – the chapters still unfolding; a story without an end.
The table is set for two. It’s been a while since I cooked for another human being. A while since I planned out an evening. A while since I embraced being in the kitchen. A while since I listened to Tracy Chapman and sipped on red wine while nibbling on Camembert cheese. This whole process feels really old to be so new.
I’m back home for a week. I can’t say I was particularly excited by the thought of coming home. My heart was filled with a mixture of dread and a wee bit of excitement. The latter mainly due to all the yummy food I’m going to eat. And man do we Singaporeans know how to eat.
It’s been a while since I blogged. And it’s not because I’ve got the blues or anything like that. I’m in a big transition phase right now. It’s time to pack my bags and get ready to go. And no, it’s not a holiday this time. It’s a move. Whenever I move from one period of my life to the next, I find myself thinking about where I was when it started, and where I am now. And boy have I come a long long way.