My mother has been watching the National Day Parade on TV for longer than I can remember.
Invariably she would bring up the story of the PAP parading through the street where we once lived and how she and her whole hairdressing salon — staff and customers (those who could) — rushed out with fire crackers to celebrate Medeka.
Oh, the innocence of the electorate back then. How unabashed and unsophisticated their enthusiasm by today’s standards!
Invariably too, every year on National Day, she would fret about the weather. She’s fearful of accidents for the sky-divers in particular. Besides rain would be a bad omen in her books.
In recent years in particular, there had been hard stopping hours be4 the parade as National Day had tended to have somewhat weepy weather in the early part of the day.
Yet when the parade began, the drizzle would stop and the clouds clear and mum would then declare triumphantly, like she had ownership of the whole thing: “Minister Mentor Lee’s luck will continue. And Singapore’s too!”
So today, because the weather remained fine throughout, I joshed her by pre-empting her pronouncement: “So mum, what do you think? MM Lee and Singapore’s luck will remain bright?”
“But of course,” she shot back, more alertly than she is about most things nowadays.
More poignantly, she repeated several times throughout the parade: “I’ve lived to watch another National Day parade!”