I was helping my mak to serve food for lunch. No dining table di rumah masa tu.So hidang la di lantai di ruang dapor.I was 12 years old then.I remember it was during the school term holidays, because my brother was also at home.
Just as I put the plate of sambal tumis udang on the floor, a small face about 10 years old, appeared at the kitchen door.
It was an unfamiliar face to me.But my mom knew him.
"Ni anak jiran baru pindah d tepi jalan dekat kedai Kiang sana." my mak said.
The boy stepped up nearer. His eyes looking at the food served.
"Mak cik, nak nasi ? " He said.
I rasa heran.Why this boy suddenly asked for nasi ? Then he patted his stomach and said."Lapaq ".
My mak asked, " Mak hang tak masak nasi ke di rumah ? "
"Dak, mak keluaq dari pagi tak balik lagi "
"Ayah ? " I asked.
"Ada orang mai berubat, ayah dok berubat orang " He said.
La, anak bomoh depan tu rupanya. Adoi, kesian budak tu, lapaq smpai had to search for food.
" Mai naik ", I said, "duduk sini "
Sekali lompat saja he was in front of me.Amboi cepat sungguh aih.
Terus tangan dia capai nasi dalam pinggan,
"Aik Aik , tunggu dulu, basuh tangan dulu " I said.
I have never seen a boy his age could eat that much. My mak's sambal udang was quite hot, but dia makan macam tak rasa apa. Sweating all over.Then tambah lagi, tambah lagi.
Habis saja makan, terus lompat turun and hilang.Thank you pun tak da..
The incident repeated 4,5 hari. Tepat time lunch dia sampai, habis makan balik.
Lama2 my grandma who was staying with us said, "Ni kena pi habak kat emak bapa dia,entah2 depa tak tau pun dia dok makan sini."
The next day I put an extra plate as usual, expecting him to come like usual.But this time sampai kami finished our lunch, siap basuh pinggan, dia masih tak timbul.
"Tok pi habak apa kat bapa budak tu ? " I asked.
"Pi habak kat bapa dia la, anak dia dok makan nasi umah kita " My tok said.
"Mesti bapa dia marah dia " I said curiously..
"Ikut suka dia, anak dia " my mak said.Sejak tu I never see him again.
In my heart, rasa bercampur baur, kesian ada, bimbang pun ada, kalau2 the small boy kena pukul.
Every time nak suap nasi ke mulut mesti mata meninjau ke luar , kalau2 dia mai. Poor boy..kesian.