14. March 2013 · Comments Off on Another Summer · Categories: I. 11 to 12 years

There are a few European families in this neighborhood.  My brother hangs out with two brothers named Donald and Ronald.   We go hiking in the hills above our neighborhood.  After we discover the tunnel with the trick entrance and the barrel of bones, there are always a few children who want to go hiking with us.




Doreen&Ah Nui


The people in the other house in the churchyard are devout converts.   They keep to themselves, even though I’ve been in their house with my brother.  They have a teenage son, a little older than my brother.  He is shy and doesn’t say much but his English is good.

I am surprised when he stops me on the path and gives me a small box.  Inside is a gold necklace with a little gold cross.  He just wants me to have it as protection, he says.  I accept it.

I had a gold necklace like that, but all my bits of jewelry have disappeared, even the gold earrings that Ah Seem gave me when she came to see me at my grandmother’s house.

The family across the street has a gramophone in a room where we can dance.   Their door is always open.   We hear dance music, stop what we are doing, and drift towards the music.  Then we all dance.  It’s like a scene in a musical.   I learn to do the jive and jitterbug, rumba and tango.

Some friends my sister made invite me to a house party.  They even give me a hand-me-down dress for it.  The dress is made of a white shiny fabric with red buttons and ribbon trim.  It has a full skirt that swirls when I spin around.

The party is in a large house set back in a wild looking garden which reminds me of the jungle that Tarzan and Jane live in.  We dance all night, even on the verandah, until the parents turn the music off and tell us to rest.  We find spots to lie down in a big room with mattresses covering the floor.

Then we all get up and go together to the earliest Sunday Mass at our church.  We have the shortest walk home.

HC church

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