Thursday, February 28, 2008

Mint-something Deficiency Syndrome.

"A diabetic person, you are not!" said an old man to me only just now.
"Say...?" I did not know this old man, he was, a perfect stranger. But somehow, something, triggered him to approach me and say those words which caught me off guard.

I was sitting on a public bench somewhere in KL earlier this morning, not to catch my breath mind you, but just to rest my left leg. I had seen the old man earlier but did not take too much notice of him as he was just one of the many people milling around the area; if I were to start taking notice of one, then I would have to take notice of all, which in an area where people come and go as they please, would not be a very wise or prudent thing to do. Strangers, after all, can be bad and good. And alhamdulillah, I have been blessed to meet many more of the good than the bad. And with sun hidden and the day cooling, you just cannot blame anyone for finding it hard to keep their eyes open. It was, in other words, a very lazy morning!

I have to admit here though, I was not feeling all perky myself this morning. Somehow, I feel like I will be very sad tonight. A mere premonition, perhaps. And I try to shrug it off putting all blame on the weather...until I found the old man sitting beside me. He did not say anything at first but gave a curious glance or two towards me. And being the clown I am, I off course smiled to him. Didn't feel like doing much talking.

After several minutes, I was about to stand up and walk off when the old man uttered those words "A diabetic you are not!"
"Say...?" I did not know this old man, he was, a perfect stranger. But somehow, something, triggered him to approach me and say those words which caught me off guard.

There was something odd about this man which I then began to notice. I could not make out his height but he must be at least 5foot 5. Sitting erect on a bench which an average Malaysian would find comfortable, his legs juts out rather uncomfortably and it was from that observation I deduced his heights. He had an almost worn out brown barrette on his head and his shirt and pants were well ironed which to me mean the old man is no beggar. With a gentle breeze blowing, I could faintly smell a cologne which I was not able to recognise. The same gentle breeze too kept blowing at his long, white but sparse beard, making it seem to float softly then fall back in place when each breeze die down. In his right hand, he held a cane, the kind which is rare to be seen nowadays. Noticing a line just below the head and all around the cane, I would swear it hides a long dagger. Perhaps I may be wrong, but this is no ordinary old man sitting beside me. I asked him again "Say...?".

"You are feeling sad,"he quickly replied. "But you are not feeling sad for the past nor the present moment."
I was half stunned and my mind went like "Say, is this guy a soothsayer or something?"
Much to my shock, he replied "Look, I am not a soothsayer or bomoh, but simply a retired medical practitioner with years long experience in life. I have come to notice and observed you for quite a bit and know you are feeling troubled. Again, as I mentioned earlier, not for the past nor the present, but for the very near future we each will pass through."
"Hello!" my mind went again, "is this guy Yoda unplugged?"

"My friend," the old man continued "none in this world is by himself. We each are part of a community and the community, us. When narrowed down to individuals, we each are a community by ourself, but a community incomplete."

"You look tired, and I know you are tired. As many who have walked the life we have would be." the old man said looking at my face which must a blank expression as my eyes were looking for the crystal ball which I thought he surely would have. But there were none to be seen.

"I will not bore you with details as I am quite sure you have to be going very soon already. But for now, let me be directly honest: Your trouble and anxiety is not for losing something you never had, but missing something which you have just experienced, as anyone would in their life. And it is this very experience now causing you to feel sad and tired. But it is not an ailment nor a disease. Rather, it is what I would like to think of Mint-something Deficiency Syndrome." The final part came out more of a garble to me as he mentioned it in a softer tone which was further drowned of a passing heavy traffic.

"Mint..what?" I asked him.
"Mint-something Deficiency Syndrome." But his face was already turned the other way, perhaps distracted by the sound of a child crying wanting to be held by her mother. At the same time too, a gust of wind blew from my back and carried his words away from my hearing. And even as I opened my mouth to speak and ask him again, the old man had stood up and was beginning to walk towards the child. But he stopped a moment and turned his whole body facing towards me.

"Do not be overly worried, my friend,"he said. "Live as you have, and cry if you must. But do it alone where none can see you. In perhaps a year at most, you will have the answer to which your heart now seek, but your ears hear yet not." And he walked off again.

Mint-something Deficiency Syndrome; is that a chocolate or something? Whatever. Now my mind is more trouble than it was not. Maybe.


tokasid said...

Salam my brother and sahabat:

That old man's words are wise words.
He just put the perspective in order for you.

I feel for you my brother.I do.
And my du'a is that old doctor can find a cure for your Mint-something deficiency syndrome within a year or two.If you his number maybe I can call him up and maybe I can be his research assistant to get the cure.InsyaALLAH.

Anonymous said...


Kata Tak Nak said...

I dare not say anything about this. Just cannot say anything about it. That's all.

Diphthong said...

mint chocolate (dark). that might help albeit temporarily.

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

Mint-something what? Is this for real, macha? sounds like a real deal clairvoyant la shah. a wise man he sure is. very mysterious but with all the mess clouding my heart and brain, I wouldnt mind having some advice from him, really.

cakapaje said...

Wa'alaikumusalam Doc,

Thank you Doc. Unfortunately, I do't even know the old man's name :)

cakapaje said...

Salam Accia,

Life is, interesting :)

cakapaje said...

Salam Cikgu,

Nothing to worry about, sir. But thank you for our concern :)

cakapaje said...

Hi Diphthong,

Mint chocolate (dark). Now, would that be a bar or a milkshake? :)

Nice of you to drop by, and thank you for wanting to cheer me up.

cakapaje said...

Salam kerp,

Now, if I do find him again, I will try to get his number and pass it to Doc. That way, both of us will have 2 people to talk to eh? :)

Take it easy bro. You know what I was contemplating to do yesterday? In fact I was halfway through it already until...hey! This make a good subject to blog about. Tell you what, I'll put it in as my next entry and perhaps you can follow suit :)

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

ha? you didnt mean contemplating about going down on one knee and propose to anyone, did you? hehehehe...

ok la shah, show us what you've got in mind and if its worth jumping in, i'll be right behind you.