It was the Monday following Chung Yeung Festival or the Double Ninth Festival, the day we pay respects to our ancestors. I had arranged with my sisters to visit my parents’ niche in Diamond Hill Columbarium. Actually it was my father’s niche but long before her passing away, my mother had it processed for her urn be placed alongside with my father’s. As the columbarium is conveniently located and we still miss my mother, we go there quite often not only on ancestor-worship days. There is no elaborate practice. We just bring her flowers and stand there in front of the niche. With eyes fixed on the photo, we talk to her.
I boarded the MTR at Kowloon Tong Station at about 11 in the morning. I was so pleased to find the compartments not crowded at all. As I seated myself, the man at the other end of the bench caught my attention. He was sound asleep. He must be dead tired. I started making up stories around him.
“Can he be a night-shift janitor on his way home?” I know a security guard taking two shifts for three days of the week. Or “has he taken a long homeward-bound journey?” I was almost sure that he was heading home because otherwise, he would not be this relaxed in such deep sleep.
This observation of passengers and exercising my imagination has always been my favorite pastime when commuting until phone games captured me. In recent months, I succeeded to redeem myself and I am now back to this fun-filled mind game.
We are much smarter on our own without the smart-phone.