Attended a farewell ceremony yesterday. A father of 7. Single-handedly managed the family when wife went suddenly 34 years ago. An odd job man. Any job to keep the family going. With eldest girl, then 18 taking charge of cooking and cleaning. The rest of 5 boys and a girl had to lookout for one another. Youngest being only 10 recalled how one late night mum was sent to the hospital and never came back. A weak heart.
He recalled the times when after school the boys would look for coins under drain covers near bus stops. Thus affording a packet of snack from the windfall. Times when he had enough to buy chicken rice sans chicken. The fragrance, flavoured rice with a drizzle of dark sauce and chilli was just as scrumptious. Aunties and uncles helped out whenever possible. Sewing clothes and inviting them over during festivals.
Today all of them have done well with families of their own. A parting words given by the pastor reminded them about being a family. Maintaining the close family relationship. More so now. The father would have wanted it. Just what the father had done all these while.