My granduncle is the grouchiest person I have ever met. I have never seen him in
a happy mood or heard him speak in a gentle voice. It is always a scowling face
and a harsh grating voice. I usually keep my distance with him and avoid contact
as much as possible, although sometimes it is not possible.
He is my
grandmother's younger brother on my mother's side. My mother used to tell me
that he has had a hard life. He became the breadwinner of the family when he was
in his teens after his father died. He worked all his life in the construction
business as a bricklayer and mason. It was probably through his hard toils and
labor that he developed his very grouchy
personality. He is in his sixties now but still goes out to work wherever he
He is not tall but his limbs are exceptionally long and his hands and feet
are exceptionally large. I suppose it is this combination that gives him
exceptional strength for I have seen him carry two bags of cement, one in each
hand, with apparent ease. A normal man would be struggling with just one bag.
Often his workers would reap his wrath when they are unable to keep up with his
work, or his strength. Four-letter words and the worst
profanities under the sun would come out in torrents. The workers
just keep quiet for none of them would dare to stand up to him.
How his wife and children tolerate him is a mystery to me. He and his wife
lives together in the same house with his son and family. There are altogether
six people in their three-room house that is just opposite mine. Frequently his
harsh voice would come across as he chastises
a family member, or the family dog. No one argues back. They know it is futile.
Most mornings I see this grouchy man get into his beat-up old car on his way
to work just as I go to school. Wishing him good morning is a waste of breath
for he never answers. So I have given that up. It is better to leave him alone
to scowl as much as he wants. Perhaps one day he will stop his grouchy ways, who