One of the biggest highlight this week – getting Dad his birthday present!
Here’s a little back story –
My dad was not highly educated, just an ITE graduate, who managed to take care of his parents in their old age, and raised the three of us with the help, love and support of my mum. He’s not the gentlest soul, but he really lived each day making sure we’d be okay.
It’s his nature to scrimp and save on the little expenses in life, like not buying a drink, eating out or spending money on decent shampoo, etc.
Since leaving his job last August, he has been travelling a lot on public transport and has started to borrow my mom’s bicycle for short distance travel (of course, to save money too). But my mum is rather petite, while he is rather tall and they have to adjust the bicycle seat after each of their turn.
So at the beginning of this new year, my mum raised the idea of buying him a new bicycle.
After much discussion, mum and I went to the nearby bicycle shop (where she knows the seller well) to look at the options early in the morning. One wasn’t the right colour, one wasn’t the right type. So we needed something in-between, a mixture of the two qualities.
The uncle told us that a new batch of bicycles were coming in later today, so I asked mum, why not just drag dad here and let him try? It’d be easier to find him something he likes, and get the necessary adjustments done.
“It’s impossible to make a transaction with him around. He’d think it’s too expensive.”
Mum dismissed my proposal. But we went home anyway, and I told her it’s worth a shot.
Hours later, my mother’s phone rang and an old friend asked her out to dinner. So I was left alone with dad, and I made her believe I was giving up the plan to buy a new bike today.
Little did she know, an hour after she left, I managed to drag my dad out of the house.
“Let’s go buy something. Let you buy something and I’d pay.”
– that was all the clue he had, even after much pestering. (chuckles)
So I went back to the bicycle shop with my dad this time around. My dad checked out the bicycles… didn’t meet his expectations, so he went around the shop.
And I saw a new blue bike hidden in a corner.
My mum is a regular at the bike shop but I wasn’t. So I presumed the uncle didn’t recognized me until he stood up, gave me a funny look and said…
“Is this the one you’re looking for? :)”
That’s right! Blue bike – checked. Right model – checked. Then I realized the uncle DID recognize me and he had hidden the new bike for us, despite not having left our contact details or any monetary deposit.
My dad started to try the bike rather sheepishly. And for once in my life, I could tell him,
“Try and see if it’s what you want. You choose, I pay. Any other accessories you want, get them all in one shot. ” 🙂
Possibly one of the coolest, most awesome and proudest moments of my life, being able to afford something my dad wants and being able to surprise him like this.
And of course he did his fair share of bargaining! But after all that, he was beaming.
“Aiyah, anything la. Can la.”
He said like it didn’t matter but you can see the delight in his eyes (and the corners of his mouth). And there, he cycled it home.
Oh yes, and later on mum called, determined to rush home and buy the bike herself. By the time we got home, she was ready to set off and tada~ she was just as thrilled to see him with his new bike!
“I can already imagine his look of pride tomorrow morning, cycling to meet our friends for a cuppa cuppa.”
Not sure if my brothers are chipping in for the bike, but hey, I proved my mum wrong and managed to get dad to make a decision to spend money! And the joy meant for him, was given to him.
At most I’d just work harder in days to come, to earn the money back. No sweat!
As what I’ve learnt from my first regular job – you can always earn the money back, but the precious moments once gone, would never return.
Nothing compares to making my mum and dad happy! :)))
Okay, yes, maybe if I ever get to save up enough to buy a full professional photography set of lights, camera and lenses. Hahahahhahaa but that’s another story!