Meet Leonard. No, He’s Not a Gadget.

As I’m typing this I’m roughly 15,000 feet above sea level, on my way back to Penang via Firefly.  I took out my camera and started snapping random photos of the things I see.

One of my subjects was this bright eight year old boy, Leonard.  You can view a better photo of him and his cute brother here.

He noticed that I was snapping photos of me and his brother being in awe because it was their third time on the plane (yes, he told me that much).

“Do you like taking photos?”
“Yes, I love taking photos.  Do you?”
“Yes.  My mother says I’m very good at taking photos.”
“I see.  Do you want to be a photographer when you grow up?”
“What do you want to be then?”
“I want to be a soldier.”
“I don’t know.  I just like it.  Which hotel are you staying?” (He’s eight!  He’s eight!)
“I’m not staying in any hotels.”
“Oh, so you’re from Penang?”
“Yes I am.  Are you from KL?”
“My father, my brother and me were born in Malacca, and my family moved to KL after that.  We live in Semenyeh, that’s very far, I believe.”

We spoke about the tiny little ‘islands’ that we could see from above, how pretty the contours look from bird’s eye view, and he gave me tips on how to get free online games.  Tip from Leonard:  Go to and then I don’t remember anything much that he said, something about ‘click the small button here and there’.  It surprised me a little that I could relate so much to an eight year old, but I guess somewhere inside, we never grow up after all.

Oh, he just asked me something.

“What are you writing?”
“About you.  Nah, just kidding.”
“Are you writing an email?”
“Er…some sort.”

I like talking to kids who show an incredible amount of curiosity and boldness – something I hope he doesn’t lack when he grows up.

“I like planes.  I like to fly.  Do you like planes?”
“Yes, I love planes.  I like being way above ground.”

I smiled to myself as I said that.  There was something in that sentence that meant much more.

“Me too.  Why don’t they serve free drinks here?”

Haha, you’re in Firefly, boy.

“It’s just a short journey, so I guess they don’t.”

I decided I shouldn’t pollute his innocent mind with such criticism yet.  He’ll get a lot of that in years to come.

But like I said, he’s bright.

“They do in Air Asia though.”
“They just do things differently here, I guess.”

Silly, I found myself lost for words to an eight year old.

“Are we reaching Penang?”
“Yes we are.”
“How long more?”
“About 5-10 minutes.”
“Wow, that’s fast.”

Yes, Leonard.

Time flies too.

7 Responses to Meet Leonard. No, He’s Not a Gadget.

  1. cc says:

    I can’t put my finger on it, but something about this article makes me smile yet break my heart a little.

  2. Couldn’t agree more with cc. This is one of them special pieces that just makes your heart go all sorts of directions… 🙂

  3. CC, Kenny, I suppose that’s what we call, bittersweet. 🙂

  4. u-jean says:

    agree with cc

  5. Mayakirana says:

    Beautiful! That’s why we adults love kids. They are so innocent, yet wise at the same time. And most kids, like adults, want pure, unadulterated attention from adults. When they have that gift of atttention, everyone learns. See, we learnt about where to get online games and why Firefly does not serve drinks… haha, don’t let Idris Jala find out.

  6. Yu Jean, 🙂

    Krista, I actually miss that little boy! It’s strange – for a moment, I did hope that the flight would last longer. But then, time flies when you’re having fun eh? 😉

  7. Pingback: That (Corporate) Thing You Do |

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