Why I Write ...

Purely as a form of expression to the emotions that run riot in my life at different junctures. This blog has seen several title revisions that also reflect the state of being and evolution I am constantly in. If one were to remain stagnant in hope of never changing their temporal present, one will awaken someday to much regret. Life is about living, evolving and adapting to the constant changes all around us.

My spot on the web is essentially a journey along with my monologue ramblings of my coherent mind accompanied by the incoherent thing called life. Read me if you like ... if you don't it is not the end of the world. I am at the very least a believer in humility lifts us further than pride.

Happy trails

17 November 2007

Muka Jernih Nov 17, 2007

This evening, my dad had asked me to go withdraw some cash from the ATM for him. So once mom and the kids left for their overnight stay at the Girl Guide's HQ in Seremban, I drove out to town to get my errand done.

It was a pretty run of the mill kinda drive from where I live into Seremban town with the innumberable mad Malaysian behind the wheel doing their typical thing. Needless to say I was kinda ticked when I got to the front of the main BSN branch in town.

Put on my hazard lights, parked on the side (ok I might have been obstructing traffic on a normal day - it's Saturday for crying out loud! Give a girl a break will ya!!!) Turned off the engine hopped outta my car and walked to the ATM machine (when are we going to have drive-thru ATMs people???)

As I walk up to the 2 ATM units, there's a man with his back facing me on the left one so I go up to the one on the right, stick my dad's ATM card in punch the code, pick the transaction, get my money and statement and am about to walk off when I turn around and there's the same man from earlier hovering on my left.

So I look at him, a tad bit alarmed and I ask "Ya pakcik, ada apa?" (Yes uncle, anything?)

He looks at me and says, "Pakcik nak mintak tolong sikit. Pakcik nampak kamu ada muka jernih, boleh mintak tolong, nak keluar duit."

So this is like oh ok ... I have a muka jernih - the direct translation here is Clear/Transparent Face. It's not abnormal old folks needing help with the techno monsters of the new age ... so I said "Ok pakcik. Ada pin nya?" (Ok uncle, do you have the Pin)

He said he did, gave me his ATM card, and said could I please withdraw RM150 for him. That's easy, so I punched in the details pin and all, then he asked if he could see his balance, so I said sure and added that I wanted a Transaction slip which came out ... I hand him card, money and slip and he asks "Duit pakcik takde lagi kan?" (There none of my money left is there?)

I took that to mean his balance .. so I point out to him on the slip withdrawn 150, balance XXX.xx and show said there the money is there with the card. I asked him if he needed anything else he said no just making sure his money was all there and again he said "Pakcik rasa senang tengok muka kamu, muka jernih, boleh mintak tolong tak rasa takut" (I feel at ease looking at you, clear/transparent face, I can ask for help without fear)

I said my goodbyes and walked to my car ... thinking for a bit and then it dawned on me, when he asked about the money, he was making sure I had not siphoned some off him whilst withdrawing it for him, also I guess the Muka Jernih here - he meant trustworthy ...

I mean yes I am a pretty transparent person, my heart's on my sleeve, my emotions on my face. And I don't mean anyone harm. It is often baffling to me why would anyone go out of their way to make life for me miserable. But they do it ... don't mean I have to be the same now does it??

For what it's worth, I'd rather be seen as a simple person (it sounds negative almost don't it???) than a shrewd conniving one. Good deeds are better than planning the misery of others.

I must say this little unexpected discourse made me smile to myself. One Malay old man, one Indian woman - worlds apart in many ways, and a small exchange that made me smile, because for a very very prief moment, he was a man in need of assistance, and I was the one he felt he could trust to ask for that assistance.

You might ask were there others ... well when I got there it was me and him at 2 different ATMs, by the time of this exchange there were a few others, some Malay and another Indian lady and her kids. He picked me - how odd.

I find it intruging how life gives us such snippets to remind us there is good in everyone, we just need to open our eyes and look without preconceived notions. I admit I had my misgivings when he approached me ... but looking at him, I thought what if this was my father? And heard him out.

People are so quick to judge and dismiss often without any base or foundation to that judgement and we miss the small gestures that have an amazingly wonderful capability to refresh one's own flagging spirits and renew hope.

It's a small thing I guess that some stranger, I am not likely to bump into again should think I have a muka jernih ... but that stranger made me realise that ani is not a bad person really. ani does what can best she can with all good intentions. things go haywire sometimes but the essence is the same person, same heart, same mind, same soul .... perhaps only if one stops to look does on realise ani exists, otherwise I blend into the wallpaper ...

I came back and listened to James Blunt's - Same Mistake (you can find it on YouTube) ... it was an interesting touch to the frame of mind I was in ...

No comments: