Friday, May 27, 2005

Back view and loneliness.

When I was on my way home this evening, I came across the local high school. The school grounds were empty, except for the brown fallen leaves that littered the school. The carpark was almost empty, except for a truck and 2 cars.





There were no children in the school and I think school had been over for quite some time. No children playing in the fields or training on the courts. Just empty.

Then I saw a man walking around the school yard with a black trash bag in his hand. It was a big school yard. Not the typical Singaporean school yard with concrete and a small patch of lawn. That was the school yard I know because I was schooled in Singapore. The yards here are like a park, with big trees extending as far as the eye could see. Students sitting beneath them, chatting and eating, playing games.





*Not exactly a photo of the school yard but it looks something like this.

The man was picking up the remnants the kids left behind. The kids didn't leave them behind, but the strong gusty autumn wind just picked up wrappers in the bins and scattered them around. Still there wasn't much rubbish, and the man didn't seem bothered or grumpy.

However it was something about watching the back view of a single person that makes you think. He seemed so lonely, hobbling around the school yard and bending every now and then to pick something up. Sure he was the schoolkeeper but it seemed that no one ever paid attention to him. The kids had come and gone. The school was completely quiet and no one was around. But him. It was a lonely back view.

All of a sudden, I felt sad for him.

...

And it's not just this lonely man that gets to me. Old people get to me as well. I feel sad when I see old people, all wizened and wrinkled, alone. I just wonder where their families are and why they are alone. They seem so frail and lost in this frantic world of ours.

Some things just get to me.




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