I went to Aramco to submit registration documents para sa isa naming product for power substation. Tulad ng inaasahan ko, wala na naman ang in-charge sa pagreview ng application. Isang taon na mula nang una akong magsubmit ng registration documents na ito, at isang taon na ring hindi ko siya mahagilap sa opisina niya o sumagot man lang siya sa telepono at email niya.
Finally, last month sumagot siya sa akin, at ang sabi niya ay wala siyang natatanggap na mga documents kaya kailangan akong magsubmit uli.
I asked the help of my friend na kasama niya. Mas senior sa kanya. He accepted my call and told me he will come out to the lobby. He asked me to bring the documents inside at nireceive niya ipinapatong sa akin sa harapang mesa nung in-charge.
Then he asked me to come to his office, he asked me to sit down and he told me, after February you’ll find it difficult to come here and make follow ups. Sinabi pa niya na hanggang February na lang siya.
Sabi ko how many years ka na ba sa serbisyo. 35 years na raw. Pinipigilan daw siya kahit na matanda na siya dahil ng sa gamay na nya husto ang trabaho at matalas pa rin ang isip niya. He told me that he was offered higher magrenew lang ng contract.
He explained that he will not renew. He asked me “what makes you happy?”
Sinagot ko siya, “What makes life worth living is what makes me happy.”
“That’s profound. Make your answer simple.”
“Anything that would make me have a purpose to somebody makes me happy.” sagot ko.
“Exactly!” sabi niya. “In my job, I am driven by the thought that I am of use to somebody, and I have a purpose in the organization. However, I have reached a point that I have to fulfill my own purpose. What is that? To lead a quiet life. To lead a contented life, away from this kind of life. You know, I work here, I earn a lot, but it also drives me to lead a noisy life, stressful life, a discontented life. Because I earn a lot, my level of wants have increased. I want to buy more, that it has put a strain in myself, in my mind, in my heart, in my health. I bought a piece of land in Hofuf-Hassa and have transformed it into a farm. My mind is into that kind of life now.”
“Same dream I have.” I told him. He wished me luck, told me to take care and made me promise to visit him often. He added that he will call me one weekend and ask me to join him in his farm. I am by profession an Agricultural Engineer, he quipped, so I can give him a lot of advise. I replied, “all my pleasure. I am so blessed in having a friend, a brother like you.”
Then I asked him how much was the offer for him to stay. He whispered the amount.
Very high for a 62 year-old kind man.
“Children play in the park, they don’t know. I’m alone in the dark, even though. Time and time again I see your face smiling inside. I’m so happy. That you love me. Life is lovely. When you’re near me. Tell me you will stay. Make me smile” – Chicago