Memory

June 4, 2010 § Leave a comment

In the church canteen today, I sat down excited to flip through a book I had just bought. I had heard so much about it.

Near me, with tufts of white hair peeking out from his cap, and pants pulled all too high, he looked every bit like the typical old man. His bent figure resting on an umbrella, he was asking the indian man reading his newspapers if today was friday or saturday. He seemed a bit embarrassed to be asking the question, for he was apologising for his poor memory due to age.

“Fri..day?!” He exclaimed in shock, after he had received an answer. He then thanked the indian man, and then apologised for his poor memory again.

What happened is that he had come to the Novena church, thinking that it was saturday, and that there would be Novenas throughout the day. But since it was a friday, the next session would not be Novena but Mass, 5 hours away.

I thought it was adorable. But as he tottered out, I realised having a failing memory was no joke. For this man, it had meant a wasted journey.

The irony? In my hand I was holding a book on memory.

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