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Thread: The Legendary of a Child Groom

  1. #1
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    The Legendary of a Child Groom

    (1)The First Meeting

    At the end of 1945, the first Chinese New Year was approaching after we had defeated the Japanese invaders.

    The atmosphere was hot. People were busy making rice cakes, malt sugar processing and Spring Festival shopping.

    There was a big crowd in my parents’ incense shop as well. The customers always liked to have fun with my parents:” Congratulations to you, Boss and Landlady! It’s your day. Whoever the rich or the poor, a bundle of incense for ancestor-worship rite is absolutely necessary! We all come here for your prosperity!”

    “ Thank you for your coming! We bless you with the same prosperity” my mum and dad answered simultaneously.

    It was about midday, when the busiest time was over. Mum went home to prepare the meal as usual. Two of my child sisters were also busy at housework to assist my mum.

    They were cooperating in full swing, when a loud barking suddenly broke out outside our main gate door. Obviously it must be our yellow dog’s yelping.

    After a while, the door was bumped open. One middle-aged woman led 2 wretched boys and with a stick on hand dashed into our courtyard. Perhaps annoyed by such a rude behavior, the dog was fiercely pounced on them and rested 2 paws on her shoulders with its bloody tongue out and constant hooting in its deep throat.

    The larger boy was so scared that he immediately ran away crying, however, the younger one boldly snatched up the stick from his mum and repeatedly struck the dog. The dog flew into a fury. It left the woman behind and pounced on the little boy.

    At this agonized moment, a shout came out from the kitchen, “Stop! A Huang (yellow dog), go back to your kennel right now.”

    The dog immediately became a real underdog. It spiritlessly ran away with its tail downward.

    That was my mum’s reprimand. When she heard a big noise rising in the courtyard; she rushed out from the kitchen and found a bedraggled woman with a boy attacked by the dog.

    She immediately stopped the catastrophe and asked my little sisters to give them some food, which they had just prepared for our lunch.

    The woman was very grateful. She kept mumbling:” Thank you for your kindness indeed, you have saved my son and myself!” Then, she turned to her sons and asked them:” Lu-er and Guan-er(her sons’ names), come here and give Landlady a kowtow!” . *

    The elder one instantly came to my mum, kneeled and touched his forehead to the ground. The younger one who once hit my dog, however, just stood there grinning and even made funny faces towards my sisters with his dirty hand sweeping over his blackened face.

    After that, 3 of them turned to leave. Taking no care as to whether they burnt their fingers, they grabbed at the steaming food in the basket.

    “Wait a moment, my younger sister!” My mum suddenly stopped her and pointed to her sons.
    “In this deadly cold winter, poor kids still wear such thin rags. How can they bear such cold!” said my mum, “ I have some old and useless cloths. You may keep them to keep the kids’ warm.” She said with wet eyes.
    In the mean time, she went into her bedroom and took a pile of cloths to them.

    A blue jacket was put on the little boy known as Guan-er. It was my elder brother’s school uniform, which, of course, couldn’t fit to him properly. He looked as funny as a traditional scholar in the Peking opera wearing a robe with long sleeves.

    * Kowtow: A Traditional Chinese courtesy. To kneel and touch the forehead to the ground to
    express deep respect, worship, or submission, as formerly done in China.

    (To be continued by P2: New Neighbor of Tenant)

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    Last edited by wenzili; 10-12-2006 at 08:21 PM.

  2. #2
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    The Legendary of a Child Bride (2)

    (2) New Neighbor of Tenant

    In the year of 1950, because of my father’s unemployment, we lost our financial support all of a sudden. Mum and dad had to lease some of our spare rooms to get a bit of extra income.

    One day in late fall, a new tenant of middle-aged couple moved in.

    With beetle-browed big eyes and rich in rotund voice, the man looked like an actor. He always behaved himself determinatively and stoutly as if he were a military officer.

    The woman, however, with her snow-white skin and transparent eyes, was as soft as water and as clean as a piece of ice. Her charming and elegance could make any present noble lady fade.

    After a few days, when they completely settled down; the man came home and led a dirty kid at age about 11 to 12.

    The boy was in such mess conditions that only a pair of white eyes was found winking on his entirely blacken face. He followed the man with a swagger.

    When he strode into our door, he even made funny faces to my mum and my second sister. Mum was amused by his naughty look and surprisingly found the worn-out jacket he wearing happened to be that one she once offered to the little beggar.

    “Third brother,” she couldn’t help asking the man, “this boy is…..?”

    “ Oh, this is my nephew.” the man answered, “ I just brought him here from my home town, the Tea Bend Village.”

    “Your nephew?” Mum was puzzled even further.

    “Yes, my sister-in-law said she had too many kids to bring up and sent this boy to me as an adopted son.”

    “ Your sister-in-law?”

    “You are right! My second brother has been tramping in Le Ping, a county nearby, for years. Left several kids for her to feed up. Her life is really tough!…..”

    Then, he told us a sad and undulate story ……

    (To be continued by P3 The Three Brothers in Tea Bend Village)

  3. #3
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    (3) Three Brothers in Tea Bend Village

    Just eight kilometers away from the northwest of our town, there was a small village surrounded by a surging river, which flew towards north at first, then, for unknown reason it suddenly turned its course to west and left a bent peninsula behind. Because plenty of tea bushes had been planted here from generation to generation, it was known as Tea Bend Village.

    At the east end of the village, there was a 3-brother family with its family name of He. He’s ancestor was very rich, however, in current generation, it’s fallen down.

    Different from their village fellows, none of the brothers willingly stayed at home for farming work.

    They all emigrated to somewhere to conduct their own business.

    The eldest brother moved to county town for balance* making.

    He rent a small shop and ran his business by painstaking effort. He had suffered from colic for years. Suspending a testis bag as large as a pumpkin under crotch, he was always bending his body and walking astride with great hardship.

    He was a really responsible person. Ever since his wife died a long time ago, he didn’t marry again. He supported and served his kids as both father and mother. After his only son’s death and daughter-in-law’s remarriage, he took full responsibility to bring up his grandsons and granddaughters with his aged poor condition.

    When I was a little boy, I had always seen a scene, with a whirly hand drill, he was squinting eyes and bending head over his weigh-beam processing.

    With his spiritual dedication and hard work, he was constantly struggling against the disease and hardship and took his responsibility to support his family.

    The second He was a carpenter.

    On the contrary to his elder brother, he is an irresponsible man.

    In the year of 1944, accompanying to Japanese invasion, a terrible flood befallen to our hometown.

    He took advantage of evading these natural and man-made disasters and left his wife and kids alone. Actually, he had committed adultery with a young widow and had bred a sideslip daughter in Le Ping County.

    After his disappearance, his poor wife and 2 sons had no means of livelihood. They had to beg everywhere. They were weeping day and night and longing for his coming home with food supply for their survival.

    Sure enough, one day in 1949, he had finally returned home. Unfortunately, what he had brought back wasn’t the food they were yearning for, but an unexpected little girl.

    Because, after the liberation, the illegal cohabit was firmly forbidden by the new government.

    The widow wanted to remarry someone formally. They had to separate.
    The second He had no way, but shouldered his daughter and rugged cloths back home.

    Bitterly waiting for more than 4 years, when husband had returned home, the wife got no single grain of rice but a little mouth crying for food. She had no other way but to send her younger son to his uncle, the third brother.

    (To be continued by P4: A Glorious Rising Up)

    * Chinese traditional balance is composed by a long wooden pole with a metal hook or tray at one end and a cord nearby, plus a moveable suspended plumb. The pole is scaled by inserted copper thread. The plumb is moved to different position as per the mass differece of weighted item. The specific quantity is shown by the scale on the pole.
    Last edited by wenzili; 10-08-2006 at 02:03 AM.

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    (4) A Glorious Rising Up

    The third brother was a professional army man. He had jointed KMT (Kuomintang) army ever since his youth.

    He got his promotion step-by-step and was ranked as a deputy colonel of local security militia. He reported to Colonel Zhang Si Wei, a valorous bravo of local tyrant.

    Mr. He was a qualified military officer. Under his leadership and rigid discipline, hundreds of soldiers performed as per strict enforcement of order or prohibitions.

    Leading his soldiers and with a shining pistol on waist, he was strutting in street the year around.

    Sometimes, if necessary, he and his army also traveled to neighborhood, such as Le Ping, Po Yang counties etc.

    He had successfully pursued and captured his wife once in his military service in Po Yang County.

    Besides this pleasant experience, professional military life proved to be very harsh and danger as well.

    At that time, PLA (the People’s Liberation Army) were winning the civil war. Millions of soldiers were driving the KMT remainders away and stepping forward to south of China, just like strong wing sweeping through the fallen leaves in the autumn.

    The dynasty of KMT was swinging under the liberation storm.

    Actually, after Xu-Bang Campaign*, KMT was completely defeated, no formal resistance happened again.

    In early May of 1949, PLA men passed by Le Ping and marched to my hometown, Gan Yue County. There wasn’t any formal military force of KMT inside town, a mere hundreds of Mr. Zhang and He’s local security militias deployed there.

    As mentioned before, Mr. Zhang was a fearless person with an exaggerated faith to his own ability and voluntarily took the responsibility to defend “party’s regime”.

    Gan Yue Town was surrounded by water. The west and north parts of the town were naturally barred by famous Po Yang Hu Lake. The south and east, however, were separated from mainland by Xin Jiang River.

    As Mr. Zhang analyzed, there were two entrances led to our town only, one was in Mabeizui ( horse mouth) Ferry, the other was in Shagang (sand harbor) Ferry, 3 miles away from Mabeizui.

    He immediately divided his army into 2 parts. Part 1 followed him and ambushed behind the dyke in Mabeizui. Part 2 led by Deputy Colonel He and hid in Shagang Ferry.

    Sure enough, the pioneer company of PLA arrived at the opposite bank of Mabeizui Ferry on May 9, 1949.

    The company was led by Mr. Ma, a tall man with countless pockmarks on his face.

    Perhaps, the invincible victories had generated somewhat their arrogance. They paid no attention to any potential danger, when he was shouting to his soldiers to bridge the ferry for succeeding army.

    Suddenly a gust of gun fighting, as furious as thunderstorm, broke out.

    Lots of his soldiers were hit and fell down to the water. Even Commander Ma himself was also slightly injured.

    “Damn! I thought I had no chance to fire my gun yet, after Xu-Pang Campaign.” He cried out with his pockmarks turning to purple.

    “I never imagined we had ever lost so many brothers in such a tiny place by that lousy cubs.”
    He quickly organized several counterattacks. But none of them had ever shaken-up enemy’s defense a bit. He was confused; “why there were still so many donkeys ever existing?”

    Then, he decided to change his way and asked his deputy to conduct constant feint attacks on his behalf.

    He led some soldiers to approach to Shagang Ferry.
    At the same moment, Deputy Colonel He had arrived at the ferry already.

    Hearing that deafening noise from south welkin, he went into a deep thought: “The capsizing of KMT’s regime is inevitable. It is no use to cry over spilt milk.”

    He considered Mr. Zhang’s resistance was nothing but to kick against the pricks. He quickly made up his mind to disarm and rise up. He immediately erected a white flag and lined up his army beside the road waiting for PLA’s coming.

    After a while, with harsh panting and sweating, commander Ma and his army arrived at the dyke. When he saw the situation here, he was really overjoyed. He instantly ordered Mr. He and his army, as pioneers, to charge to Colonel Zhang.

    In Mabeizui Ferry, however, Mr. Zhang was in his fighting excitement when a huge noise arose in his backward position. He considered it were Mr. He’s failure to defend PLA’s attack. He had no choice but as fighting as withdrawing.

    He finally escaped to Taiwan and got KMT’s high admiration. It has been said he was granted an extraordinary military rank of lieutenant general for his heroism and loyalty to KMT.

    * Xu-Bang Campaign is one of the most famous campaigns in Chinese modern history. It was launched on Nov. 4, 1948 and ended on Jan. 10, 1949 for 66days. PLA won this campaign with the victory of destroying or capturing KMT’s army of 550 thousands including the headquarter commander and all other top-rank officers.

    (To be continued by P5: Deputy Colonel's Luck and Misfortune)
    Last edited by wenzili; 10-12-2006 at 08:21 PM.

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    (5) Deputy Colonel’s Troubles and Fortune

    Thank to the third He’s rising up, a heavy casualty of PLA men had been avoided. Newly founded Military Control Committee had shown him mercy for his contribution. As a high rank counterrevolutionary officer, he got no prosecution but mere demobilization to his troop.

    He came to his oldest brother, the first He and jointly ran their balance making business. To settle down his family, he rented our room nearby their shop.

    With the passing of time, Mr. He’s contribution got faded from people’s memory. He faced more and more political pressure, which was felt like a formless hat, always ready to put on his head.

    No one wanted to contact to him as if he were a plague carrier. However, my family never had such prejudice against him.

    On the contrary, mum always patiently taught his pretty wife to do housework hand by hand just like 2 kindred sisters. Our two families were really smoking the calumet together.

    When my sisters was brought up and entered an elementary school, their charming look and smart behavior were highly admired by He’s couple.

    Once, after a delighted chatting and acting on a sudden impulse, mum promised one of my sisters to be Guan-er ‘s child bride,.

    Since my eldest sister was 1 year’s older than Guan-er, the couple cheerfully selected my second sister.

    Just by such an impromptu talking, my poor sister’s fate had been permanently fixed on.

    The news was quickly spread away. Some kind friends and relatives considered my mum got mad. They came to my home and persuaded her to change her mind. “There is no reason to sacrifice a fairy like daughter, just by a slipped tongue.” They said. ” She’ll have a miserable life as a counter-revolutionist’s daughter-in-law.” Undoubtedly, their words were true. But mum took no care of them.

    Sure enough, the politic atmosphere was getting hotter and hotter, pre-deputy colonel, Mr. He finally got his title of “ Historic Counter- Revolutionist”.

    Their life came to a corner.

    At that time, some good-will people advised my mum again:” Joking words should never be taken too seriously. Take more serious consideration to your daughter’s future instead.” Their wards were really convinced. But, mum still firmly denied their kindness, since she considered Mr. He was in difficulty. “I don’t want to fish in troubled waters,” she said, “ I hate snobbery!”

    (To be continued by P6: Naughty Boy’s Crisis)
    Last edited by wenzili; 10-12-2006 at 08:22 PM.

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    (6) Naughty Boy’s Crisis

    In 1954, Mr. He started his own business and rented a small shop downtown. His family moved out my house.
    His adopted son, Guan-er studied in an elementary school for couple of years. With his bravery and alertness, he led an adventure life and hadn’t changed his behavior a little bit.

    Once, together with several his buddies, he evaded school and climbed to a tall tree to capture birds. The tree grew on the steep cliff in the south of Dongshan Mountain.
    Unfortunately, he stumbled and fell down by an accident. He broke his left leg and got a heavy injury on head. With head fully covered in bandage and leg in plaster, he had lain on bed for more than 3 months.
    His stepmother was a very unskilled housewife who always afflicted by domestic chores. She had been annoyed by Guan-er’s naughtyness for a long time. Triggered by this accident, she strongly demanded Mr. He to send him back home.

    My mother came to her shop and spared no effort to persuade her, but no way to convince her.
    Mum had to move him to my home.
    At that time, our financial situation was very awful. In spite of this fact, mum together with my sisters had overcome tremendous difficulty and taken great care to him until his complete recovery. Then she sent him back to his stepparents.
    In 1955, Guan-er came to a middle school with his naughty habit unchanged. The students’ desks or teacher’s platform were his right stages to fight to his classmates. After a while, he had been dismissed by the schoolmaster for his “mob fighting”.
    It hurt Mr. He’s couple too much, that they had vowed never took him in any longer.
    Those people who tried to convince my mum before came to my home again,” You see, It was as clear as daylight. The leopard can never change his spots.” They said mixing jibe into kindness.
    Had been aware of the serious situation, Guan-er seemed to become sensible and had completely straightened out.
    He came to my mum with heart-struck weeping and promised his repentance.
    As a dedicated Buddhist, mum was very kind. She always treated someone with broad mercy and forgiveness. Under Guan-er’s repeat guarantee, she recognized he had been clear enough to his own faults and had made up his mind to correct his bad habit. “ It is no reason to refuse someone’s corrective action.” She said to Mr. He’s couple.

    “ Once some one is in progress, we should offer him more opportunities and awake his goodness with our sincere affection.” She said again with great patience.

    ” I willingly sacrifice a flower-like daughter, why don’t you grudge to wasting dozen liter of rice to have a trial?” Little by little, Mr. He’s stiff attitude had been softened.

    With her model behaviors and language art, mum finally got her success to convince the couple and help them to overcome this crisis.

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    7)A Complete New Life

    There is saying: a fault confessed is half redressed.

    After that crisis, Guan-er seemed to be enlightened all of a sudden. He had completely turned over a new leaf and thoroughly remold himself by quitting his bad habits.

    As a craft apprentice, he dedicated himself to balance fabrication day and night.

    Mum was deeply impressed by his boldness and shrewdness. She often predicted once his advantage was fully developed in good business, it would be some sort of prosperity.

    In 1957, there was a cooperativizing tide surging in all over the China. All private-own workshops with similar products needed to be combined to cooperation.

    He jointed a united craft company and became a vigorous business backbone.
    In 1958, the “Steel Making” movement was on a grand scale. At that hot time his wisdoms were thoroughly brought into play.

    The blast furnace he led achieved the highest daily yield and constantly renewed the local and provincial records.

    Based on such facts, he was nominated to be one of our provincial representatives and had been to He Nan province for business competition and skill introduction.

    Then, he continuously had his days and had been promoted as the deputy manager of Gan Yue Metal Works Plant, general manager, then, the Managing Director of Gan Yue Transformer Cooperation. .In succession, he was honored as advanced labor models of county, district and province until his retirement. This is the story later.

    In 1959, KMT was constantly declaring to “ Counterattack Mainland China”.

    The situation in both sides of Taiwan Strait was deadly intensified.

    The PLA were recruiting everywhere and enforcing the defense in the coast frontier of Fu Jian.

    After physical exam, Guan-er was qualified to be an army man. He had been notified that he would be driven to the front in a few days.

    Every one knew, he was facing a fateful danger, however, mum still order my sister, who was studying in high school, to have a wedding with him in such haste.

    Finally, mum had practiced her year’s commitment, which had been considered as a ludicrous behavior by secularism at that time.

    In this way, arranged by destiny and restrained by integrity, two groups of strangers became relatives by marriage.

    Combined by the child engagement pointed by parents, my sister and brother in law have had a peaceful and harmonic life ever since. They are not rich but happy and with no complaint nor any regret…..

    ( The End)

    1) My blog address :
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    [email protected]
    Last edited by wenzili; 10-14-2006 at 08:48 PM.

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