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Little Stories 74 : Choice


He stared into my eyes while I looked at him back.
My tears were falling silently. Unbearable pain, hidden scar.

He said,
"Life, is about choices and you make decisions.
After that, you need to bear the consequences of the choice that you made.
Don't regret, don't whine. Remember that. "

Little Things 114 : Written Words


I found human essence in their writing when they thought the world isn't listening. I heard soft whisper of their hopes and dreams, anger and judgements, pain truths and hidden confessions. I saw feelings floated in between of reality and imagination. I felt their energy, almost invisible among things that were already unseen.

It's the closest that I can reach towards people. 
The intimate moment that I grasped only by being aware of those voices in written words. 

I may not have any friends, but I learn about a lot of people. And I feel them.
I'm not sure whether it is the right way to be connected. Who am I to define the ultimate way towards being connected among people? Whether to know but remain silent or, to be really close but clueless about even the basic things about them.

Read, and let the words answer you.

Little Stories 73 : Bus


I took the first bus that came while waiting for a ride home from work. Usually buses were occupied with students and foreigners. It wasn't crowded that night so I sat in the front side of the bus, next to a Chinese student. I blinked my eyes lazily, hunched upfront while hugging my bags. 

Half asleep, half awake, I stared at the busy road in front of me and noticed the bus driver from the front mirror, reflecting us. It was the guy that teased me in bus, but he is no longer a bus conductor, now a bus driver, I guess. I prayed that he didn't see me. 

"Heeey, gadis !", he shouted excitedly from his driver's sit and everyone looked at me. Sheesh. I sheepishly nodded when he asked/shouted whether I was sleepy and tired. 

I don't know what it is about them that make them look happy all the time, whether in the morning or at night. Sometimes I see them both while I go out and back home in the same day. A mutual understanding that we are all working for money to survive.

I tried to ignore him and looked at the window, trying to get less attention than needed.

*

Soon we reached my destination and someone pushed the button. I thought for a brief seconds on which door to use, 'the back door or the front door' ? To continue avoiding the excited bus driver, I chose the back door. I waited for him to open it, but he didn't. So I had to look at him, he looked at me from his sit and grinned. Great.

By this time, I was blushing. I hated the attention and this gave me loads of it in one go from all the passengers. I had to use the front door, I guess.

The passengers were smiling.

*

Soon, I hopped from the bus and walked slowly towards my house. I noticed that the bus did not passed me. I turned around to look.

The bus was moving slowly right next to me. He grinned, and the passengers smiled.
"Meh naik, kita hantar sampai rumah".

I mouthed "Takpe lah" and smiled politely.
I walked faster, the reddening of my face might as well outshines Mars.

Several attempts more, he asked me whether I am sure?
The passengers found the little drama entertaining and kept waiting for my response.
Even the passersby started to look at the bus that was moving too slow.

I can't hardly respond, shook my head and felt my face burning, until I turned to the corner towards my area. The bus had to go straight and he finally shouted goodbye.

*

Although it might sounded a bit dangerous, it happened in an open space, friendly environment with the whole bus and passersby watching. A friendly flirting tone that I am not used to. I was even amused by the short incident.

I thought such things only happen in cheesy love stories in books or movies. 

Little Things 113 : One Morning


I asked God whether I am fully equipped for the upcoming test that I'm about to throw myself into. Days after, He gave me a pre-test, a tiny bit of preview about the future. Not only that I declined afterwards, I changed. 

Why did I changed?

That one morning after the test I woke up and said this to myself,
"I don't want to keep on waking up feeling like this".

And since then, I changed. 

Little Things 112 : Favorite Books


" In thousand books that you read, which one is your favorite? "

My favorite would be the art of writing and storytelling itself. Like a mother being asked to choose her favorite child, I can't pick the one perfect book that bound to be kept in my heart forever. 

Because each book represents its story and unique in its own way. And maybe if I muster everything in a box, I might see the whole universe in one go. 


Little Stories 72 : My OCD


Yesterday I tried out Carbonmade's newly redesigned website when I notice that the little purple icon in the sign-in page is slightly 'not' centralized. See the purple icon here --> sign in page. I've told myself several times before this that I need to control my fussiness over this OCD habit of mine. So to make my annoying thoughts calm down, I decided to tell AF about it. 

Like most people 'without' OCDism, he told me that it looked absolutely fine. And to make it worse, he said that there was nothing wrong about the icon. Because OCD itself means 'Obsessive' Compulsive Disorder, I had to make him see what I see just to prove to I'm not making things up. So I print screened the sign-in page and my bookmarked pages, both using same icon but one with the old icon and one with the new one :

Left one is the new one, and right one is the old one.


Can you see the left icon with the 'too' narrow purple line in the right side hairline? Well I can, and it disturbed my eyes, like any other things that are not centralized or with somehow 'this-looks-a-bit-wrong' look.

I felt ridiculous afterwards for being too serious over that.


And I know that I am not alone. 
I don't know why certain things need to be aligned or grouped in the same colour, or correct spacing and right spelling, or photographed with the right 'spacing' with no black border and those sort of things. 

I just don't know why, it doesn't make any sense at all, but for me it just feels right.

And for everyone of you that post pictures in Ig with "the-wrong-way-according-to-people-with-OCD" , you don't know how much we are disturbed by it that we have to 'unfollow' you. Yeap. No offense intended, just personal disorder :D

Little Stories 71 : Old books, old lady.



"Do you have any classic ? Like Fitzgerald or Tolstoy, and perhaps Nabokov or Kafka ?".

I asked the lady who seemed eager to help me find some books. I handed her the list of books that I made. She took the paper and went back downstair. I continued searching for any interesting books. Held some overpriced old books and put it back again. It is never enough when it comes to spending money on books.

She came back saying all the books were sold out.
I nodded and said that it is okay and she kept pestering with other books that I already have or don't want to read.

Rows of dusty plastic-wrapped books, my favorite hiding place, minus the nosy lady.
A very hot afternoon, sweating in my kurung and heels.

She kept saying;
"I will give you a really good price, choose any books".
And I really needed my February books, so I bought :

Hard-cover of 'The Thief Lord' by Cornelia Funke,
the paperback of The Children Books by A.S. Byatt.

She charged me RM 60.

I hate her right after I found out days later that one of the book is semi-damaged by water.
Dried, wrinkled and spoiled.
You old lady.

Little Stories 70 : Last Day


I've known her for more than 23 years. She was there while we were growing up, and I considered her as one of my family member. I knew this day would come eventually and I am not in the right position to complain or give an opinion, after all, Bibik is my dad's full responsibility. But I am sad for not being able to make her stay and let her spend her older years here. She is not that strong anymore and I'm worried that if goes back to Indonesia, she will work to support her living. And I am sad because she hasn't seen any one of us getting married yet. And I am sad for those time after my parents divorced, she hardly meet us.

But life is life. She has to go back to her family.

*

Last Friday when I got my day off, I went to my dad's house right after I found out about my dad's decision to terminate Bibik's service. I walked from ma's house to my dad's house. I greeted her and sat outside in the garden to have a chat. We talked about her days and plans and disappointments and little stories. I know I'll miss those quick chats we have when I went out jogging and stopped by at the house. I'll miss her food, and her presence. 

I spent days thinking about how I'm going to write this. How 23 years will be dedicated in a single post. How my writing should be to make people understand how important she is to me. Words can't justify feelings. These feelings I have, guilt, for not being able to spend more time after we left the house, and more guilt, for not being able to take care of her, for not being married yet, or give her happiness. She is like a mother to me.

She took care of me while I was growing up. My first milk tooth, my first bicycle ride, daily walks from school. I spent a lot of time, having her, than both of my parents when they were too busy with works. And it was devastating to let her go.

*

After more than 15 minutes I spent talking with her, I noticed that she called me with a different name. Our neighbour's daughter's name. I thought I heard it wrong. Then she spent more time talking about general stuffs, and kept calling me 'Mahani'. She started to get confused when I said things about my siblings, and at one point I said I am 'Azreen', not 'Mahani'. But she didn't heard me. I almost lost it. But I played along eventually, letting her believe that I am her. At 7pm, she said it's better if I go home before Maghrib, knowing Mahani's mother is quite strict. My heart was crushed inside. 

I said I want to go for a quick jog and kissed her hand saying that we'll meet again one day. 

My eyes gleamed with tears when I walked out from the house. I don't know which one is more painful. Not being recognized by her or knowing that we were saying goodbye.

I almost took a turn from the road before I heard she shouted my name loudly from afar; "Azreen!". At that point, I smiled painfully. I ran to her. She looked at me and said sorry for not being able to recognize me much earlier. Sorry for being confused. And just sorry. We both cried. I hugged her and said that it was okay. 

At least at the final moment of our goodbyes, she finally recognized me.