Funeral wakes for departed friends always inject a sense of loss, a melancholy mood, even a state of suspended animation inside me. It was no different after Andy’s funeral mass which was held at 5.30pm at St. Theresa church this evening.
Not wanting to go straight home after the mass, I decided to drive up Mount Faber to have a drink, a simple meal and some quiet contemplation. The view towards the sea across to Sentosa island was calming. Life seems to come to a standstill except for the cable cars. They kept moving in perfect unison, with one line moving away from me and the other coming closer towards me.
Like the cable cars, life comes and goes – endlessly. We say hellos and goodbyes to friends, family members and acquaintances too – hopefully with more hellos than goodbyes. But that is beyond our control.
When I first came to work in Singapore, a few of us rented a semi-detached house in Bedok Road. With just a wire fence separation and directly behind our rented home was where Andy, his wife and two daughters lived. We both worked in the Engineering division of the most-admired Singaporean company. He was very helpful and on more than one occasion, helped me and my friends to settle in.
Now is this, my next part of my story, pure coincidence or providence? Two weeks ago, I received a message on Facebook from Andy’s daughter Bernadette. That was the 11th of May. She introduced herself as Andy’s younger daughter. After some message exchanges, I said that I would like to pay a visit to her parents after my trip to Kuala Lumpur.
I returned from KL on Thursday, the 22nd of May. And on Sunday morning, the 25th of May I received a message from Bernadette informing me that her Dad was called home to The Lord. I had not followed my own dictum – to do first things first.
“So, think about this long and hard. Are there things you’d like to change? For you never know how much time is left that can still be rearranged.”
~ From a poem by Linda Ellis, The Dash