Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Maybe this is why I worry.

I think I worry too much.

The one other time that comes to mind when I was really scared and really frightened was when I was at prefect camp when I was still a young fresh prefect in form 3.

The camp was at Fraser's Hill, and the whole trunkload of us morning session prefects were there. As a form 3 prefect, we were the youngest group at the camp. We had really good instructors and they filled us in on all of the lore concerning Fraser's Hill - he told us about how this guy called Fraser got lost in the Hills and was never found again and how there are spirits inhabiting the forest.

The camp started out all right, and we were having loads of fun, until it was time for the night jungle walk. We walked through the jungle, instructor in front, in our various groups. I vaguely remember that our group was in part named after a marlin (the fish) for some reason I cannot recall.

So we went into the jungle and one by one we emerged. It was a fun experience I tell you - it was really cool to just enter the cool night jungle and see it like I have never seen it before. I must say I enjoyed it.

When we came out and did our mandatory headcount, my jaw dropped. Apparently we were short of one person. We recounted, but the same figures showed up again. We were short of one person. One person did not make it through the night jungle path with the rest of us. Panic ensued. We were frantically trying to figure out who was the missing one.

"Its Y!", the screams went, and my heart just sunk to this deep, dark, cold place it should never have sunk into. Y was a senior of mine that I was pretty fond of. I used to hang out with her clique pretty often during that period and I must say that they were quite nice to a young one like me.

"What if she fell into a deep trench and can't call for help?"

"What if she got kidnapped and raped?"

The voices and panic around me just echoed so loudly into my head. I didn't know what else to do or think. All I could do was pray.

I forced myself to think positively, the way people advise you to, but it seemed like a graceful checkmate, my thoughts had no where else to run to, but to lead to the conclusion that something bad happened to her. Something very bad, that would probably result in me not being able to see her smile ever again. My head was pounding, my heart was cracking, and in the end, I just broke down.

At that point all that was going through my head was "what would I give to have her back here safely?" Nothing else mattered at that moment, just the safety of my dear friend.

When they were assembling a search party to go search for her, I rushed to volunteer. Sadly, they had enough volunteers, made up mostly of the older prefects, and I was told to wait. How could I just sit there, on the cold dirt, not doing anything for my friend?

I told myself that in the future, I would be the one looking out for the safety of all those dear to me. I would hold them close to me and never let them come close to danger.

Before our makeshift rescue team left, 2 dark figures emerged from the forest trail. A slightly rounder and bigger one and a thinner one! It was one of our instructors and Y! It was as if God just intervened and pulled her out of the deep, dark, jungle back to us.

The instructor explained that he kept her away from us on purpose, to test us if we were attentive and were watching out for each other. Apparently we weren't. We didn't even have a clue when one of us was missing from the group.

Initially, I was furious at him. Who was he to toy with our feelings, my feelings! Who was he to make me more scared, frightened, than I ever was in my life?

He told us "look out for your teammates, you never know when they need you the most".
Because of his little stunt, I never stopped watching out for the ones I love till this very day.

RX, a friend of Y, seeing how worried I was for Y whispered to me, "...your future girlfriend is really lucky. You really care for the people who mean something to you."

Maybe this is why I worried so much when you come home so unexpectedly late. I never quite forgotten how afraid I was on that fateful night. Let me be the one that keeps an eye on you and keep you safe for all time.