In Naguib Mahfouz’s allegorical story “Half a Day,” there was a child who was so hesitant in going to school for he thought that attending school was a form of punishment. Alongside his father who chaperoned him walking to school, he always asks this question, “Why does a child really need to go to school?”
The father answered, “It is where a child matures into a man.”
As the child goes near through the gates of the school, stumbling with nervousness, his father confronted him and promised that he will just go back to fetch him after school.
Then the child expects that his father will truly come back.
As time goes on, while in the school, half of the day was done and it’s time for him to go home. As he bade farewell to his friends and passed through the gates, he never found any trace of his father, so he thinks he will just go home without him.
As he walks alone going home, he found big changes in the surroundings as if it is not the usual scene where his father brought him to school.
As he continues, he stops near a pedestrian lane. But he finds crossing it difficult.
Suddenly, there was a young lad who assisted him. The young lad said, “Grandpa, let me take your cross.”
Looking back to what happened to us and the years of our lives, we’ll see a semblance of what happened in the story. We cannot really notice how fast the time is ticking.
It comes to a point where we find unusual or inevitable changes in society, environment, and even in ourselves.
It feels like it is just only a wink of an eye when the last time our parents brought and guided us going to school, when we still depended on them in every decision we made.
Sooner or later, they’ll be gone and the time will just come when we only have ourselves to trust in the race of life.
Countless problems, conflicts or challenges have erupted and challenged our abilities. But it doesn’t matter if we failed or not in facing those scourging problems along the way.
What is important is that we are still here, alive and kicking, ready to face yet another year of our life.
As 2019 bids us farewell, we should not forget what this year has done.
It is not about the year, it is about the happenings and the stories behind it.
What happened there could be a valuable lesson for us to take advantage of challenges that may emerge in the upcoming years.
Some stories behind it could be an unforgettable moment that can be cherished whole throughout of our lives.
Time really flies as if our lives only take half a day. Advance Happy New Year, everyone!