Arrivederci

I don’t think I handle departures very well;

Even bidding someone I never met, or personally knew in reality. He is the country’s founder-man, and he’s left at the age of 91. I can’t emphasise on how highly regarded he is to everyone, and myself included. I often complain about how much there is to dislike about this country, saying it is awfully rigid and homophobic and what-not. But in retrospect, this is one man’s work, and it’s spectacular. He gave everything, lived to the best that life could offer, overcame every obstacle that came in his way. In a week’s worth of tears, and uncountable 8 hours the people have queued to see him off (because they couldn’t meet him while he was alive), there’s a little less complaints, a little more appreciation. Indeed, the world is a little darker and a little less bright, and a few hundreds of thousands’ hearts are broken.

It is a little funny though, that it is only in this grim period that we see the slightly more gracious side of singaporeans.

For a long time I have respected him, perhaps because since young we were brought up learning how commendable he is, but it is only when I look around, and realise the beauty of this city. He was not a realist, and never as rigid as i thought he was – because the truth is, he was a realist who dreamt idealistically. One by one, he turned all of his dreams, and visions into a reality, for all of us to appreciate. My greatest question for him, if i could ask him today – how did he manage to do all of that? You know, dream big dreams, seeing how broken this place was? How could he find the capacity to love something that was perhaps a little wrecked?

Unfortunately, queueing yesterday to bid farewell to this founder-man was quite a nightmare, I must admit. In the process, it has sieved out the impatient, and filtered out the sadness and emotions while we wait in line. With exhaustion kicking in as we proceed into the early morning, and with the growing impatience, all feelings have been numbed, and time surrenders to surreality, and all honour has turned to chore.  Look at the flowers, the pretty white offerings that go through five hours of wait; By the time we lay it – it is much tattered, a little too disfigured, and slightly disjointed – very much dehydrated. The flowers make quite a good representation of us.

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