It was a Sunday morning. Nice weather as usual in March. The sun rays through the window, fell over my child Tom’s flushed, exhilarated face, and flickered his expectant eyes with the onward motion of the train. Since we sat down, he has kept his face glued to the window.
I took a yawn. The sunshine made me feel sleepy. “What a wonderful, rare weekend. But Tom has to finish his field experience activity report. What a pity that I can’t have a good rest at home,” I thought.
Unlike the weekday morning rush hour, there were very few passengers in the carriage. I easily took the seat and sat at ease. Talking about the view from the train every now, little Tom always picked my sleeve and tried to get my attention.
‘Dad, Look. Look that!’ He repeated. I rested my head against glass division and answered him curtly.
Excitement raising in Tom’s voice, the woman opposite lifted her eyes blankly to us and then back to her phone. It is just a furtive glance, but I was greatly embarrassed. I heard my voice turn to sternness, “Sit up, Tom,” I ordered, “and keep quiet!” He turned and looked at me doubtfully. By the strange coincidence, the train entered a tunnel and interrupted our conversation. The view from the outside was now completely dark, and silence overcame all.
We reached the country park at noon. The long lost scenery of blooming trees, open grassland and fresh air were back again. Seeing this, my child was instantly in a good mood.
“Where is that steam? You told me there is many fish.” He asked with eager anticipation. It was the hidden stream I used to travel with my dad and uncle. Back to those adventure times, I was still a boy, at almost Tom’s age. Remember that I could fish well and caught about twenty of them, I said to Tom confidently, “just follow me, I will take you there.”
The dew-drenched path meandered like the paths of my childhood. For a period of time, the living memories lead me the way. Leaves rustled gently like the oldies in the breeze.
However, no long after, I found myself on a path I didn’t recognize, girdled around with tall trees. Recognizing with difficulty where I am, how near or how far from the watercourse, I kept going forward vaguely. I had a feeling that I was getting more and more far from that stream.
I was disoriented. When it came to a crossroad, I had been forced to stop, so did my child.
I like an invader, the glare of the overhead sun, as a serious warning, dazzled me. The huge trees lining the path became kind of abstraction. My indistinct shadow on the ground was swaying gently. Tom urged me to move. He was holding a teardrop-style net which as tall as himself, tightly in his little hand. Several young hikers passed just in time and gave me some directions. Eventually, we traveled back to my own land after a long walk.
Though the wild face of the place were still remained, somehow, now that everything it appeared seemed minuteness, plainness and tediousness. The wide, rapid stream in my memory was reduced to a sluggish creek or even a mere trickle. It was dotted with fallen leaves and twigs, and only the mossy blossom rocks, silt or gravel in its bed, not many living creature to be seen.
But this was a novelty and spectacular in Tom’s eyes. This boy has already carried his fishing net and strode over the scattered river rocks. The wet and mossy rocks raised my fear about Tom’s safety. “Tom, be careful!” I shouted. And scarcely had I said this than……he slipped and almost fell over if he was not supported by the net shaft. But one of his sandals fell into the water. “Don’t move! I will pick it,” I said and walked to him. I picked the flat and sizable rocks to stand on. I walked uncertainly and reached the rock nearby.
Suddenly, Tom pointed to my feet and shouted, “Fish, fish!”
But I saw nothing, “Where? I can’t see them.” I asked.
“Near the stone under your left foot,” he said. He handed me the net and urged me to catch them.
Several tiny blackish fish remained at rest near the stone. I kept them always in my eyes. My nets came close to them, a momentary ripple spread in rings, at a moment, those grey figures dodged the net, swam away through Tom’s sandal and disappeared in the distance……