I ‘accidentally’ stopped by a neighbor’s house one time when I chanced upon the re-showing of the movie Titanic. There was an SRO crowd so I joined in to savor once more that romantic feeling.
One of the viewers was an old lady who was a long-lost relative from Manila and an important guest of the house. She sat in the middle, surrounded by children and teens who were more fascinated with her seeming resemblance to the actress portraying old Rose in the movie.
All eyes were utterly glued to the small screen, keeping noise to a minimum.
Surely, the old lady had probably watched the film before that before the middle of the film went underway, she waved to the head of the house and asked him to approach her. Their hushed conversation was short and quick.
“We have a brief intermission,” he announced, pausing the viewing that surprised the crowd.
“Children, please go to the kitchen and check the kettle,” she ordered politely. “Put the water in the bucket and mix it with cold water.”
You know the younger generation these days, some would follow immediately while others would relegate chores to younger ones. The command from a guest provoked a mild chaos of small voices.
I decided to intervene and persuaded the non-adults to troop out of the living room. With a nod to the old lady, we had a non-verbal understanding on what had to be done.
They were an unruly lot but I delayed their chore as long as possible.
When we came back, the showing continued. It had ‘skipped’ to the safer part.
One of the teenagers remarked, “Where’s the scene where they are …”
Quicker to quell another issue, I eyed the teen and shook my head. The message was clear: No more questions.
He interpreted what I did not say but meant. He never said a word after that.
After the viewing, with all the non-household spectators gone, the old lady approached me before I left. She was grateful.
“Thank you for what you have done,” she held my hand firmly.
“It’s nothing,” I replied, a bit embarrassed. “You are a guest. We respect your presence.”
She smiled brightly. “You are wise.”
Of course, I did not mention to her that the children had already seen the movie several times. It would be a cruel thing to spoil her experience that night.