[#tamakaTravelogue] The Dirty Cloths & Uncleaned Toenails

This is a continuation of my Road Trip post.

So, I drove around looking at abandoned buildings and places. It led me to this motorbike bridge which was only meant for bikes. It was on the outskirt of the village. The bridge is built to connect the divided fisherman villages.
I was curious. I walked out of the car to explore further. It was a concrete tar bridge to replace the old British-era wooden bridge. The wooden bridge is abandoned. However, some part of it still stands strong.

I walked by the tar bridge. I saw these two gentlemen fishing by the wooden bridge. The lake view is wide open under the hot sun. Far away, two lonely fishermen on their speed boat trying to make their day. The scenery was super inviting.

Whatnot, I’ve decided to join them for joy. This breath-taking scenery is not to be missed.

The gentlemen were probably around 34 and 16. “How can I reach your place?” I asked, “take the abandoned road and make yourself up,” said the little boy. So, I made myself through the abandoned broken wood bridge with off shoe. I settled in between them.

I did some soft-soap induce conversation. I’m glad they were talkative.
I thoroughly enjoyed the conversation even though I was burning under the 44c hot sun. It is worth getting sunburned for this experience. A memory to cheer for years. I told myself.

The young boy was a little shy. He only pulled word when it was needed. He was smiling most of the time. He is from a nearby village called “Langkap” he said. He claimed to have spent nearly RM2K on his fishing supplies. He kept a plastic bag staking full of his fishing materials. Water bottle and food is no way to be seen.
We were teasing each other around and enjoyed the time.

It was one past half. My throat dried off from the blaring sun rays. The hunger slowly started to kick in. I’ve decided to take it off on that young boy. “Yeah! boy, I saw you didn’t carry any food, won’t you feel hungry later?” I asked. He answered, “Sudah, makan tadi mah” (I already ate this morning). The usual me poke with more prompts. The conversation continues.

At the end of the conversation, I got it all. He eats only twice (morning & night). Food is just survival for them. It falls below the basic need. He (they) eat to survive. That it. Plain and simple. Food luxury doesn’t exist in their life.

I wonder if he even knows what hunger is. Probably they’ve become numb to it.

the boy with his rods

The sadness made me skip the topic. Jokingly, I asked, “do you have a sister?”. He kept quiet. I asked again. I include a father and a mother.
“Does your mother know you are here?” I asked. Well, he maintained his silence.

Then, 34 years’ gentleman answered me. Don’t ask the same question when someone chooses to be silent. He probably would’ve lost everyone.

Damn, he struck me. He is right. We wouldn’t know what this little boy has gone through in life. Definitely, our life is not the same. I can’t treat him the same way. I looked at his dirty clothes and uncleaned toenails. He might have lost the entire family. He might have run away from the family. The family could have disowned him. I know nuts. This time I was covered with silence. I’ve learned to shut my mouth. I failed to observe his look.

So, I apologised. We talk a lot about prawns, fishing nets, interrupting speed boats, renting a rusted village house, buying a boat & his possible rescue plans if I accidentally fall into the lake. He said, he will wave “bye-bye”. We laughed like a lot.

Then, my hungry stomach made a call. It is time to take off. I told them, I’m a filmmaker. I’ll be making a film about them and selling high for money. I took permission to snap their pictures for my film. They were ok with it. I replied with a goodbye.

I walked to my car off-shoe. I turned back to take a look at them. They are busy fixing their rods. I guess they moved on 300 seconds ago. It is officially a memory.

The clinging of my car key said it was time to go.

The Dirty Cloths & Uncleaned Toenails. The boy will grow up to become a man but will stay as a boy on my snaps. Until life brings us together.

tatta, (bubbye)



Photo : Photos are by #tamakaphotography

The post [#tamakaTravelogue] The Dirty Cloths & Uncleaned Toenails appeared first on tamakastudio.com

You may like my other posts as well. Take a look at it. 

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4| [#tamakaTravelLogue] #SiemReap #Cambodia

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