A selfish man who totally didn’t think on what’s good for his own young, contrary to the gangsters, who’d, helped this family get this young child back, out of the fire pits, sometimes, the stereotypically bad people can be good, and, those who seemed to be good, can be, bad! Experiences, and trials of, her young life, translated…
After reading the writer, Hsu’s “That Night, I Made My Way to the Teashops”, I had the flashback of that primetime soap scene that happened in my, reality.
On my youngest uncle who’s a prodigal son, after losing ALL of my maternal grandfather’s money, he’d still drifted in the bars, the brothels, continued being his, “good son in the fire pits”. My aunt in working too hard, keeping the family intact, before their sixth child turned one, died from illness, then, my youngest uncle sold off his youngest to the local landowner to be groomed into a child bride, with the money he got from selling his daughter, had a time of easy with women then.
Back then, one day as my youngest uncle came back home, suddenly, he was, overcome with his fatherly love, told that he was taking my youngest cousin at age five to head into town to get her some new clothes, the family didn’t have any suspicions then, but at night, we’d not see the two of them, returning; my maternal grandfather thought: no matter how ferocious the tiger is it won’t, eat its own child, he’d already sold one of his daughters of, could he have in mind, to sell his own, youngest too?
And the following day, the families believed, that the fifth child was, sold.
My tough second aunt went around, asking about where my cousin went, and, in the mouth of the “agent who’d introduced” my uncle, she’d learned, that my youngest cousin was sold to the “tea shop” in Taipei, to pay for his own, gambling debts, he’d sold her for $60,000N.T.s—the poverty stricken selling off their daughters, it wasn’t anything weird back then. My second uncle was a leader of a gang in Chiayi, and asked the gangsters to find the whereabouts of my youngest cousin, and the families, the relatives, started, getting the money together, to try and save my cousin.
It was 1976, I was in the third grade. My mother bought a princess fluffy dress for me to wear, with a pair of white socks with pink lace, along with a pair of, white doll shoes, with the pigtails tied by ribbons, better dressed than I was for New Year’s. my eldest and second eldest aunts put on their traditional Chinese dresses alongside my mother, with the heels, set their hairs at the salons, with the makeup carefully made on their, faces, with the bags full of cash, and the group of us, headed up to Taipei with my second eldest uncle.
We met up with my second uncle’s brothers from different mothers, and we were led, into, the teashops, there were, so many, pretty women here! I clenched tightly to my mother’s, hand, looked around, wanted to find my youngest cousin. I can’t understand it, we can, trade the recycling metals for a malt candy, what can you get, for selling your daughter?
We entered into a room, my second eldest uncle started, negotiating with the man, he got loud at times, friendly at others, stared into the man’s eyes fiercely at times, used the Taiwanese I couldn’t understand to interact, the pretty lady handed me an orange soda, I’d, carefully, took smaller, sips, wanted to save half for my, youngest cousin.
The adults looked quite, serious, I got too bored, started playing with the zipper on my mother’s purse, they’d talked for a long, long, long time, until the coldness, the fizz of the soda wore off, and I saw my second eldest uncle stand up, shook the man’s hands, we knew, that my youngest cousin can, come home now, the ladies then, pulled out the wads of cash, and stacked them, onto the tables———
We got my youngest cousin back, three times what her own father had, sold her for, for $180,000N.T.s.
And so, this, is the behaviors, of this DEADBEAT who’d, SOLD his own young to feed to his own habits, and, also the stories of how the gangsters can be good, they’re the ones, who’d, helped get the youngest cousin of this ed get the youngest cousin of this ed get the youngest cousin of this individual back, and, the man who’d sold his daughter thought he got a good deal, and yet, the families, ended up, paying, three times more.