Three and half hours before time at the airport for a domestic flight to Cochin of one hour duration, how come ?
Made it in one hour instead of two , no rain, thin traffic.!!!
Kept my bag on an empty seat next to.mine to take out the wallet that went in during the security check, when I heard an angry voice, “move the damn bag out of the bloody seat, you idiot, the seat is for sitting”. I looked up, there was a man, a senior citizen, elder to me, sucked up cheeks, a thin body frame staring down at me through his specs. I immediately moved the bag onto my lap and told him to please sit down. I thought this person needed help.
I waited for him to cool down.
Are you alone ? , I asked
There is my family…, there, he said pointing to his right.
Why aren’t you sitting with them ?.I asked
They don’t like me, he said.
Why, I asked
Because of my behaviour, he said
What’s wrong with your behaviour ? I asked.
My temper, they don’t like it, I am always irritated, agitated , he replied
“Your are short tempered, it stays for a short time and you are not always irritated, You were angry with me, a few minutes ago and now you are talking to me freely, no anger, no irritation. How old are you ?” I tried to soften him up
“Wow, that is lot of experience.”
“Thank you, young man .” He was pulling my leg, ugh, young man !
“My problem is my.mind, it is weakening. No control. Always, irritated, wants to see some one hurt . Feels like cheating. I have two sons and a daughter and three grand children. I am not feeling anything for them. I don’t want to be near them. I shout at them, they avoid me, they do not want to talk to me. My wife is gone.”
I said, “This happens to many when they cross certain age. The plus is you are aware of it, not many are lucky and they get hated for their behaviour. Children and many grownups hate elders, some of them find themselves abandoned due to their behaviour. You are sensible, since you can’t control it you avoid it by moving out of the scene.”
He said “I am losing my sensitivity, I don’t care who is dead or living. A death news has no effect on me, since I am very close to it. Everyday morning I wake up, I am disappointed, I am still there. We should go the moment we stop contributing.”
“Our contribution ends only when we go. Do you believe in rebirth ?” I said
Bunkum, he raised his voice. You only live once. There is only one life
You are right, I said ,.YouOnlyLiveOnce, YOLO.
You only live once, he kept repeating and I kept agreeing. I said, thank you.
I saw a smile on his face and the wrinkles gaining space between them. Looks like after a long time he said something and somebody heard him.
“You should start writing about your experience”, I suggested.
My hands are not steady to write.
“Then type slowly or speak and record it, make videos, ask someone to enter it into the computer . “
I set him thinking.
I got up and held his hand and said, I will go and meet your family for a few minutes, you sit here.
I slid my hands into my backpack belts and walked towards the family.
The lady smiled , she had seen me talking to him, that is your father ?, I asked.
My father in law, she said.
She looked enquiringly at me, was he complaining ? No
I know you all love him, please express it, make him see it. She interrupted, protesting, we do.. when I gestured, let me finish, I said
Spend half an hour, at least, in a day and make him the leader. Ask him some questions of his younger days, share an old movie with him, ask him for solutions to some.simple problem (you may nor implement them, at least hear his advise). Ask him to sing or draw or write, show your appreciation, cut his nails, give him a hair cut and small little sweet things like that.
He keeps himself away, we are doing all what you said except movie.she started saying..when she got distracted with the their flight boarding announcement.
I said, it’s your flight to Mumbai ?
She said yes
Go ahead, he needs a little attention, everything will be fine, I told her and moved away to my gate for boarding, another hour to go, took a seat and watched them go out of my sight.