Tuesday, August 09, 2005

gone with the ebb of time

informed by mom and cousins that Popo's kampung house has been demolished! gosh!!! i can't believe it! apparently, the motobike shop owner (who took over the kopitiam next door and converted it into a motorbike repair shop) bought over the land or something. so now the whole place is flattened out. gosh, still can't believe it!

it's been so long since i passed by that place that i can't even remember when was the last time i laid eyes on it. from what i recall, it's overgrown with weeds and is really dilapidated looking. i think its doors and windows has not been thrown open once and its inside has not seen any sunlight since Popo and everyone moved out in 1992/93. i guess the house must've been really sad to be abandoned like that and just gave up being a house, allowing all the weeds and wilderness around it to move in and consume it.

sometime last year, my cousin told me he stopped by it to show his young daughter and sons the house he grew up in. weeds and all sorts of lallang were growing around it, even inside the house. and it was infested with mosquitoes! what started out as a trip down daddy's memory lane for my niece and nephews turned out to be a mozzie nightmare, which they kesian-ly extended their legs and arms to me as proofs. the motorbike repair man even came out to warn him that a big snake has been sighted there before and not to bring his children too close to the place. well, it's a wonder the motorbike repair owner wanted to flattened out the place!

but oh, the sweet dear kampung house where i practically grew up in! with the high stone staircase that leads down to the kitchen, the zinc kitchen roof, the outdoor non-flush toilet, the stone stove lighted with firewood at the back for Popo to boil water, the jambu air tree filled with kerengga (those big red ants whose bite stings like hell), the little drain that ran across the 'backyard' where the ducks Popo kept would drink from, the little shaded area next to the jambu tree where Popo tied Lebbie the mongrel, the cool 'basement' place where i spent many a hot afternoons with my playmates and where i hid (and eventually found by Popo) to weep, no wail my heart out when Popo told me Lebbie would have to be put to sleep, the hut at the far back where all the firewood were kept, the marshy muddy fenced-in area where Popo kept her ducks, the reban for Popo's chickens, the railings and beams where i clung my wee body to while pleading with mom to let me stay the night, the little lane beside the house where the ice-cream man would pass everyday whose ring-ring would send us running to beg 20 sen from Popo for a stick of ice-cream... oh, all the memories!

and along with it, another piece of Popo is robbed from us too.