I woke up long after the alarm went off and stepped on a dead cockroach that somehow found its way into my bedroom. I never thought about it but may be that was an omen of a day that would go completely pear shaped. I was late to go to sit with my Dad, as Mum had gone shopping and Dad who's disabled and elderly, was on his own at home. For some reason, my limbs decided to slow down and I found I couldn't hurry, apart from a burning sore-throat that didn't let up, even after downing a glass of water. so, I tried to ring Mum, once, twice - no answer. Then I tried to ring Dad, once, twice, again - no answer. Had they simply disappeared?
I made my habitual mug of coffee and cereal and decided to take a shower. After that ritual, and being more awake, I tried Mum and Dad again, still no answer.
Mum had gone shopping with my cousin and her son, so I rang Pauline, she answered but the call became garbled and I couldn't make out what she said. The phone was passed to Mum and she said something, which I still couldn't make out, when I told her I'd tried to call several times and would be going to Dad almost immediately. Suddenly, she went off and I had to hang up. From that broken conversation, I gathered, they had finished shopping and would be getting home soon. I grabbed all the necessaries and drove off to my parent's home.
At the junction of their road, another headache awaited me. The piece of grassy open ground just opposite the row of terrace houses where my parents live has conveniently become the place to set up a customary food stall, whenever the local Chinese opera season comes round. Now, is the "Hungry Ghost" season, just before the September "Moon Cake" festival. It is the season of my discontent, as those patronizing that food stall park anywhere and every where, they fancy. There was nowhere nearer the house, to park the car, get off and open the porch gate, moreover, I didn't know if my cousin had brought Mum home with the shopping. Spying a space somewhere near the steps up to the temple, I drove past the gate and reversed into that space. It was a hot place out in the blazing sun.
For all my trouble, I found that Mum had already got home with all the shopping. So much for thinking of other people's convenience. My throat was still sore and I was feeling a little headachy. It was around 1 something then, but no lunch yet. I decided to catch up on my reading and eventually fell asleep again. Opening my eyes after a while, it was nearly 3pm. Then, sunk into slumber again. When I came too again, it was past 4pm. Both my parents had also decided to take a nap before lunch! Nobody had had lunch.
Dragging myself out of the chair, I went to the dining-kitchen and found the rice -cooker on the boil. Some food was being kept warm. There was chicken curry and rice, and an enamel bowl of rice porridge for Mum. Laid the chicken curry and rice on the table mats with metal plates and 2 pairs of forks and spoons for Dad and myself, and a serving ladle, since Mum usually prefers to arrange her own dinner.
While I'm at my solitary 4.30pm lunch, a missed call comes through and I return it, making a dinner appointment on Monday with another acquaintance. He's almost shocked to know I'm having lunch at 4.30pm on a Sunday afternoon. I tell him, it's normal. Then, I remember having promised a friend on the other side of the globe to call her around 10 am her time, in the UK. I rush home to make the call, about 5 pm, my time in Malaysia.
In the midst of our chat over skype, the internet connection gets cut off and I decide to load my equipment into the car again and go to my parents' place for a less choked connection. Setting up everything again in the back room, I try her again and this time get "voice mail". So, I hang up, send her a text and go into email. This isn't the pinnacle of my pear shaped day.
On the way to my parents' home, a stupid "Polis" car, with a few young men, I assume they were either plain-clothes cops or cops in plain clothes using the company car, recklessly turned out of a road nearly hitting me as I was going along the main road. That, was the peak of this completely distorted day, and I still have a sore-throat!
Well, tomorrow is another day, as Scarlet O'Hara said. Hopefully, it'll be more in shape than today!
All the best to my readers, hoping you'll have more good days than pear shaped ones. Till next time... Thanks for listening to my grouses.