It feels like storms have surged around me. Or they’e just out there, wreaking damage on lives of many. What has transpired in the US, has been quite horrible. A man, George Floyd, was so badly treated by a member of the local police force that he died. A policeman has been charged for a “third degree” murder. George Floyd’s death has lit a fire that has spread widely and quickly. Dozens of cities in the US are now plagued with riots, looting and uprising.

On the home front, we received a call from my brother on Saturday afternoon. We were told that our sister Sim, who had been in the hospital for breathing difficulties, has been asked to go home. That sounded ominous and the implications of a cancer patient being told to go home was like a bolt of electric shock through me, that burst open the tear glands. I asked my brother what the prognosis was, as I wanted to explore the possibility of seeing Sim again. The virus has of course, stopped non essential international travel for several months now. Travel can still happen but it is bogged down with quarantine at every turn, so that a trip to Penang would entail a period of at least 28 days where I would be locked away somewhere. It was very frustrating.

We spent the rest of the weekend in a bit of a haze. The fog has not quite lifted as yet, but the week ahead will be busy none the less. Maybe it would do me good to focus on the busy work week ahead. It would take my thoughts away from dwelling on the sadness that otherwise eats away.

Yesterday, I received a photo that my brother sent me. Sim and him were together in the hospital. She had a smile of peace and strength that belies the circumstances. He looked tired but grateful to be there. He tells me Daniel, Sim’s husband, has been overwhelmed but the kids appear to be strong. My brother is there in Penang with them, along with Jean his wife and mum. I tried to call my mum on Saturday but couldn’t get through. I don’t know what I would have said if I did. Sometimes just talking – irrespective of what is being talked about – is enough, I guess.

I am still hopeful there will be time yet for me to see Sim again. I am very grateful Tress and I made a trip to Penang last November but I hope to see her again. That would be such a gift.