Dreams, lately, consist of reality. A fulfilling job; going back to school; being busy and alive enough to feel the surroundings and turn my self-absorption into someone’s better day.
I saw this old guy, busily selling his maps. Out in the heated pavement, equip with a simple polo clothing, pants and sunglass, the maps were lightly tossed in the air for a prospective buyer to catch. Fifty pesos could buy him his next meal, his wife’s medicine… I don’t know because I’m merely speculating. Once, after bouts of reluctance, I bought a Chowking meal for him. When I went out the foodshop, he’s gone. Perhaps, he sought refuge into the shady parts of the Osmeña circle.
I was disappointed, but he isn’t the only old person in the area. On the opposite side of the block was this old woman, selling flowers. I regularly buy flowers from her. That day, I took the Chowking meal to her after buying another bunch of white mums. She said ‘salamat kaayu’ (thank you very much) in that sing-song way (as if sung in glee). And like flash, I was on the street, crossing to hide again from the heat that may have nothing to do with the glaring sun in this city.
A few days after, I saw the map-toting oldie again. Determined not to lose my chance, I quickly re-emerged with a meal from KFC. I bought one map of Cebu, paid him and hand over the food. He sang the same sing-song thank-you notes to me.
A friend of mine once pointed out my affinity for old people. Back then, I was too shy to even admit that. My rearing has always brought upon me a tumultous balance — between ‘being soft’ and ‘being me.’ But things have changed. I have gone through things I have never imagined to have touch me or affect me.
I suppose it’s just time to let myself be me.
Be it soft or not. 😀