Thursday, October 08, 2015

When I was Fifteen.

I feel like a fifteen year old trying to act like i am 66 without even knowing it sometimes. Realized this a few minutes ago when i made a comment to a friend's Face Book posting of him and his younger sister visiting him in Berkeley, California. I assume she was his new girlfriend and made a funny remark added a sticker with it to emphasize the effect. Now on looking back I realize how my mind is every so often very childish and often looks for ways to express itself like a fifteen year old taking pokes at others and not caring much for the consequences it might have incurred. In other words every no and then i also find myself reminding me that i am now and old man and should be more weary of how what i say to people; should I?
What a shame to loose that freedom to be able to express spontaneously like a fifteen year old who has just discovered the freedom of speech, or how words can make others feel about any given situation in life. A fifteen year old more often than not looks obn the brighter side of life and his or her comment is often mad to cheer things up rather than to mellow things down like 66 year old, at least this has been my unwritten assumption. Now that i have been brought to my attention of this one habit of mine, I feel like i am growing old, ageing is a process of natural arrests of one's habitual actions and tendencies? I should stop doing this or doing that because i am no more fifteen, I should wear this and not that because i am no more fifteeen...I should grow up and act my age!
What was I like when i was fifteen? I was busy reading novels like, "The Carpet Beggars" by Harold Robins, "Fear is The Key", by Alstair McClain. "The Before Midnight Scholar" by LI Yu Tang and D.H. Lawrence's Lady Chartterley's Lover." I was a voracious reader and still am and thanks to my eldest brother I had ample supply of books to read, books by the likes of Wilbur Smith and later on Eric Van Lastbader and Robert Ludlum series.
Along with the myriad of novels that i consumed in those days of the early sixties into seventies, I listened to Jazz and Folk Music and was familiar with the likes of, Miles Davis and Ela Fitzgerald, to Cannonball Adderley and Louis Armstrong, Ahmad Jamal and Nat King Cole. I was exposed to the younger Joan Baez and Peter Paul and Marry, to Bob Dylan and soon followed by the Beatles; i was only fifteen by then living along the shores of the South China Sea with so much to do which by comparison today would be the envy most teenager. I would go snorkeling just about every weekend with the adults of my time all over the islands off the East Coast of Terengganu. Islands like Kapas and Perhentian, Bidong and Pulau Yu and Pulau Lima where in those day there was hardly a soul on some of them, unlike today. We, my brothers and my school teachers, my mentors and my martial arts instructors had the run of the State where recreational activities were concern albeit in the forest or the seas.
When I was fifteen, the house i grew up was located along the Padi fields and a soon as I woke up to take a piss I was looking at the long stretch of rice fields filled with birds that you seldom or don't see anymore today for as far as your eyes can see from the water way in front of you to the foothills in the far distance. The waterway was filled with fresh water fish of all kinds that you can rarely find today as most are becoming extinct due to modern ways of rice cultivation that employs chemicals. Like the birds, the fishes too have become rare and hard to find anywhere in the country except where civilization has not yet engulfed the environment. When I was fifteen, man and nature still coexisted in harmony; I was blessed, I had the best of both worlds, East and West.
Hence how can i easily give up my age of fifteen and settle for a grouchy and weary old man riddled with anger and frustrations, worries and anxieties?         

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