Sigh...I tried but could not put the text onto the entry with the song. Where did I do wrong? Er...that's not Sinead O'connor singing, mind you. So, please scroll down, click play then only read this text below.
The Streets of Kota Damansara.
I was reading Roslan SMS's entry on October 8, and was immediately reminded of some people, many of them who may not be as fortunate as I am or we are.
The streets of Kota Damansara, Petaling Jaya, may not be known to many people outside. It is unlike the song Streets of London. But like the streets anywhere in the world, it too has its own stories.
Eve, a name I shall give this lady who lives several houses down the road, is a pious muslimah living alone in a 2story house. Yet, if you were to meet her, then you might easily think she is a lady of 50's or 60's. Formerly a medium scale public servant, she lives off her pension with the house paid for by one or two of her 7 children.
Formerly known as Bandar Baru Sungai Buloh, the market value of the area increased dramatically when the name was changed to Kota Damansara and made part of Petaling Jaya. A mixed development of low, medium, and high-end housing, it is by no means an affluent neighbourhood.
At her age, Eve, shows none of the physical frailties of many of her age group. Surprisingly, she is still a keen gardener, working every morning on her small plot measuring some 10 by 5 foot, except when is not well. Then, kindly neighbours would knock on her door to check on her wellbeing.
To fend off crime and undesirable elements, many of the landed property areas have engaged security companies and erected barriers. This move, though noble in intention, is not well received by certain quarters, more so when it is seen as a segregating the residents of the low cost and not.
I know that at least 3 of her children are well off as I've seen them driving expensive cars when ever they visit Eve. This, however, is a scene that does not repeat itself with the frequency one would have thought between children and their mother. This Ramadhan month itself, neighbours have taken noticed that Eve breaks her fast almost alone. The only time when she has company is when one of her sons return from a neighbouring country.
But somehow, when you compare the kinship between the low cost and not, it seem the residents of the low cost areas have theirs more tightly woven; with the exception of perhaps one or two, they seem to honestly enjoy the company of their neighbours where each death or birth, is shared equally with sorrow or joy by all.
Seeing her living alone, I am left to wonder whether she could be lonely. But the mornings when she does her gardening, she always has a smile on her face but her eyes speaks differently. The several times emak ask me to send her kuehs or dishes, her face would really glitter with joy at having guest, even if the visit is for a moment or two.
I may be wrong in my observation, but the residence of the low cost areas are actually living a new definition of the old kampung spirits that the Malay - Asian - community is once famed for.
As we approach Aidil Fitri, again and again I ask myself on the duties and allegiance of children - any children - towards their parents. In Islam, there are numerous ayats and hadiths where the children are to honour their parents above anyone else, with the exception of the Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. Would it then, suffice for Eve's children to give financial support and - it seems - not affection as well? I dare not say more less I become that what I fear.
* Thank you Doc for teaching me to use imeem, and thank you Cikgu for opening the door leading me here. Off course, not forgetting Sofian who created my blog and left me in a lurch.