Wednesday, March 31, 2010


He was very fond of walking barefoot and the only clothes he was in everytime I met him was that very familir batik sarong rolled up to his belly button.

He has never been seen to wear any shirt; he prefers being shirtless (melenggeng as we sometimes call it) exposing his aging body to the weather.

He normally walks around from his home (I did not exactly where) to the grocery store in the row of shophouses in front of Taman Samudera Timur.

Everytime we passed each other, be it on the road or in the store, the most he did was give me a smile or a nod.

Amalia was always scared whenever he passed our house. I told her that he would harm no one. He was always walking around minding his business.

Everybody call him Pok Su (Pok is Uncle and Su is the nickname for the youngest in the family).

No one actually knows why Pok Su behaves like that or since when he started walking around and being speechless.

Once there was a man who also walked around, but he was always seen walking and carrying a gunny sack of 'properties' on his back. His properties included empty cans, old coconut shells, newspapers, etc. He would stop and said the Muezzin's call to prayer everytime he heard the call from a mosque.

Stories had it that he misappropriated (polite term for swindled) someone else's properties. Because of thet he was cursed with the extreme love of materials.

Back to Pok Su, once he broke his silence when I politely asked him: "Beli apa Pok Su ? (What are you buying Pok Su?

Surprising me Pok Su replied: "Rokok daun (Nipah cigarettes)".

Knowing that Pok Su is not a mute after all, I would always talk to him, trying to make he talk.

Yesterday, once again I met him on the road to the grocery store. I again asked him : "Where are you going?"

He smiled and replied: "I'm going to the shop to buy biscuits."

I smiled back and he gave me a very special long smile. I knew that he was very please with me willing to talk with him.

Finally Pok Su responded. He was no mute after all!

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