Posted by p2p Sunday, December 19, 2010
Rainwater was showering the damp soil of the jungle during that dark night. A man and a woman were running and the woman was carrying a newborn child in her arms. They were drenched in water and gasped for air as they moved. Eventually, they stopped and settled the baby in a wooden hut. Then, they left the place as the baby cried throughout the night. The next morning, the Ulukhai natives were surprised when they found a nameless child in the hut, lying in a basket. They were kind enough to raise the child as one of their own.
That baby, was me. Some people said that the most beautiful thing in life was to live with our parents as a happy and delightful family. Some said, our parents are our angels. Well, my parents left me in the jungle when I was still a baby so, I could not really give any comments about it. If I had a chance, I would like to meet them and talk to them. I would like to ask, "Why leave me in the jungle?"
Such thoughts were always capable of sending streams of tears down my cheeks. I missed them.
Living in a jungle with the Ulukhai natives was rather difficult and tough at first. However, life was becoming easier as I grew up and managed to adapt to it. They taught me how to climb trees and pluck fruits. I was already hunting deers in the jungle with a long hollow stick which shot a poisonous dart when I blew into it. It was a traditional method which the natives used for centuries in order to hunt animals down. I was sent to a school when I was seven years old in a nearby rural area. The environment was rather peculiar for me as I had to sit on a chair with a book of alphabets in front of me. I was never good in my studies and my teachers used to call me "addle" which carried the meaning of a rotten egg. That was due to the fact that I loved to fool around and I caused countless problems in the school. I thought, studying was certainly not something I would ever be good at.
When I was seventeen years old, the Ulukhai natives held a ceremony for me to celebrate my birthday, it was like a birthday party. It was the same day and month when my parents left me in the jungle since the natives did not know when was I actually born. It was delightful that the natives were like my family although we were not biological relatives. There was a campfire and everyone was dancing around and laughter were heard frequently. The chief of tribe, Molukkhan stepped into the scene. Everything became as silent as the graveyard.
The chief summoned me into his hut. Everyone was anxious and did not know what was going on. The chief stared at me with his vulture eyes, there were many feathers on his headdress which symbolized his status as the chief of tribe.
"Do you want to meet your parents?" he spoke with a deep husky voice.
I nodded my head slowly. I was flabbergasted, in fact. With his warm beefy hands, he handed me an envelope.
"This is a letter we found beside you when you were a baby. There is a high possibility that it was written by your parents and I am only allowed to give you this letter when you are seventeen as instructed by the writer." Molukkhan continued his talk.
As slow as a tortoise, I opened the envelope and took out the letter inside.
"Dear son, you are most probably seventeen years old when you are reading this letter. We are sorry for leaving you alone. If you want to meet us, please do us three favours." I read the content of the letter in a low voice.
The first thing they wanted me to do was to score flying colours in my major exam which was going to be held a few months later. I was puzzled by their request. What would my exam have to do with meeting my parents? Was it some kind of a joke? Thousands of questions struck my mind but the thought of reuniting with my long lost parents would stop me from thinking too much. I had to obey them. All I wanted was to see them again, even if it was just once.
Staying in front of a book for hours was devastating for me. Whenever I felt like sleeping, the thought of meeting my parents immediately gave me a burst of energy to stay awake and I continued studying. I was catching up with my other friends in school thanks to my perseverance. Months later, I stepped into the examination hall, loaded with confidence. The exam was pretty tough but, I managed to score straight A's. I was extremely happy and smiled the whole day when I got my results. I had to move on to the next favour.
The second favour was another stunning request. I was asked to complete one hundred community services. Without hesitation, I quickly found out about the various social activities organized by social clubs. I took part in a campaign which was meant to help the disabled people. I taught the blind children to read in Brailles. I helped the blind people to cross the congested road. I volunteered to give a hand to the unfortunate victims of natural disasters. I was even giving speeches to spread awareness of caring for the environment. Of course, I was not paid a single cent but I was indeed satisfied. It took me years to fulfill the number of community services my parents wanted and I was ready for the third task. It felt like Amazing Race, Explorace or a treasure hunt. One task after the other.
I was required to retrieve something from a deposit box. I was given the bank account and the pin code. What could it be? Again, I was asking myself numerous questions with no answers. The bank officer guided me into a room and opened the safe box. There was a journal. Nothing else. Carefully, I took out the journal and my heart was pounding as I opened it and flipped through the pages. There were articles about loan sharks. There were also newspaper cuttings relating to victims of loan sharks who had to abandon their home because of the unpaid debt. It was evident that the loan sharks were cruel and inhumane.
Eventually, I reached the final page of the journal and tears rolled down my cheeks as I read it. I cried.
"If you are reading this memo, you must have completed two of our favours. As your parents, we are unable to be by your side as we are having too much debt with the loan sharks. We are poor and not capable of giving you laughter and the life of a normal child. We had to leave you in the jungle as we are most probably not in the world anymore by the time you read this letter. We have only one last favour from you, be a good and useful person."
Finally, the puzzle was solved with the last remaining piece. That explained why I was required to score straight A's in my exam and complete one hundred community services. All they wanted was to turn me into a useful person. That is in fact, the wish of every parent indeed. They may scold or cane us at times but deep in their heart, love is always there. They are always willing to sacrifice themselves to protect us from harm. So, if your parents are still living, give them a hug or a kiss as they are the angels in our life.
- ► 2011