They said a picture says a thousand words.
I don’t plan to write a thousand words on this picture, but I certainly have a lot to talk about it.
* * *
I left work early yesterday, so I stopped by Masjid Wilayah for ‘Asr. When I stepped out of the masjid, school kids were running around the corridors. I thought, “It must be nice to be school children. Simple life, simple views about life. Uncomplicated. Happy.”
I asked myself, “Do I want to go back to being a child, though?”
I decided, perhaps not. Well, at least now I could earn money and I could spend my own money without needing to ask anyone’s permission. I could go anywhere I wanted to, whenever I wanted to (or rather, a safe place at a safe time and when I’m relatively free). I could contribute my own ideas to the world, although not all is appreciated and I could be wrong. I know better about right and wrong and I am more secure about it than before.
So no, I don’t want to go back to being a child.
Although a less than complicated life would be welcomed.
Then I saw two men selling ice cream, on two separate motorcycles. There wasn’t any line, the tens of children did not crowd the ice cream men. Maybe they have bought and finished their ice creams, or maybe the kids have finished their money earlier. Maybe they were busy playing they did not notice the ice cream men.
I could taste corn-flavoured ice cream in my mouth, so I thought about buying. “But the kids will stare at you because you’re a grown up buying ice cream,” my head gave me a ridiculous idea. The better part of me said, “Don’t be ridiculous!” by which time I have reached the ice cream man.
“Do you have corn flavour?” I asked.
“No. I only have chocolate, yam and durian flavors,” he said, while opening his tin of ice cream.
“Oh.” My face fell, but I saw yellow ice cream in there.
“Oh, actually I do have it,” he smiled, reached for the cone and scooped the ice cream. “RM1 please.”
I sat in my car, happy for the ice cream. I snapped this photo quickly (as the ice cream was melting) and sent to my family.
* * *
I must have looked like a mother waiting for her kids to come out of their religious class. Well, the age is right, and when I think of it now, one of them would have been seven by now. I doubt he/she would have stayed with me…oh well, that’s another story. But they are most likely in paradise waiting for me.
‘Mommy will see you, insyaaAllah. For now just play in those beautiful gardens, ok?’
After finishing the ice cream, I drove off, without a kid in tow.
* * *
Why corn flavour?
When I was seven, we stayed in Kemaman. While waiting for the van to drive us home, I’d buy ice cream from a man on a motorcycle. I don’t remember asking for any other flavours. I think this is the only flavour he had.
Enjoying this flavour brought me back to childhood. A happy and uncomplicated time.
I guess I don’t need to BE a child again, I just need to enjoy one of these things once in a while, then I will be transported back to childhood. A short moment is enough to carry me through, I suppose.
* * *
While waiting for my ice cream earlier on, I saw a bag of buns hung outside the ice cream container. I was then reminded of another time in my childhood, when my brother and I used to buy ice cream sandwiches while waiting for our driver to fetch us.
Those sandwiches are nice too. The ice cream man would slice the long bun (the ones they normally use for hot dogs), and put ice cream in between.
I never bought corn flavour though. Those times it was either chocolate or strawberry flavour.
* * *
Did I reach a thousand words?