I was in my home town during one weekend and I decided to visit a distant relative of ours who for some reasons, I had not met for years, though he was just s few blocks away. He must have been sixty-eight or seventy by now.
As I walked closer to his house, I saw an elderly man digging something on the ground. To my astonishment, it was Gubu, my distant uncle. He was holding a shovel and seemed to be planting something. “Hi there Uncle Gubu!, what are you planting?” I asked him. He looked at me unmoved, no emotion at all but appeared to be very determined. “ I am planting this”, he said and showed me a packet of Maggie instant noodle. “Ha! Ha!..you are joking huh?” I asked him. He stared at me, again without showing any feeling and said, “Do you think I am joking? Do you think I am crazy?” “Not at all uncle, not at all”, I replied.
“This old man had gone crazy!”, I thought. It could be the consequence of staying alone for too long. His wife, Sumimbika died a long time ago and he had been living alone ever since. I can’t recall where his children were, they probably had got married and lived somewhere else.
“Uncle, do you really think that, that thing will grow?” I interrupted. “Faith my boy, have faith” he said and continued his work. I walked away without saying a word. Someone should have talk to the authorities and have him given a proper medical care.
6 months later…
It was six months later that I had a chance to visit him again. I walked slowly to his house while enjoying the beautiful landscape of the neighbourhood. As I was nearing his house, I saw a beautiful tree, four feet in height, on the very spot that Gubu worked on six months ago. To my amazement the tree was blooming with fruits and believe it or not the fruits were instant noodles in packets and with several flavours too! “Help yourself son, take any flavour that you like”, a voice suddenly echoed from the direction of the house. It was Gubu, smiling, showing his yellow-tarred teeth. Embarrassed, I plucked a curry flavoured instant noodle, smiled at him and left. “Have faith my boy, have faith”, he said in the distance.
I thought to myself, “I’m going to have faith, yes! Faith! and I am going to plant at least a RM100 note!”
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