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Bougainvillea

Wan Shui and Zhang You’an, a pair of ordinary middle-aged men and women who met in a special period, they are leisurely and carefree, and each lives in peace. The acquaintance and love between the two are not instant, nor is it love at first sight, but in such troubled daily life, they walked into each other’s heart step by step with determination. This calmness and fearlessness unique to middle-aged people has also captured our hearts step by step.

one

She is a restless person. She kept wiping the objects in the room, and everything was spotless. She kept mopping the floor, and the wooden floor already had obvious unevenness of different shades. She rearranged the utensils in and out of the cabinet over and over again, and the utensils themselves were neatly arranged, like well-trained privates. Launder sheets and change of clothes daily. In her home alone, the clothes are washed and washed, and the sheets must be used for at least a week. The time allocated to cleaning sanitary ware is longer every day. This is a relatively complex system engineering. Disposable gloves are frequently replaced, and three tools are used: disposable disinfectant wipes for scrubbing seat cushions, and toilet cleaner for thoroughly cleaning the inside of the toilet. and a soft-bristled brush, small disposable towels for scrubbing the outside of the toilet.

In her home alone, the jobs that put her body in motion are few and far between.

What else can be done?

After finishing these tasks, she changed out of the full set of work clothes, threw them into the dedicated small washing machine, turned on the shower to wash herself, and then changed into clean clothes.

She doesn’t sleep in late, and gets up at half past six. Breakfast is very simple, milk instant cereal, an egg, a slice of heated bread dipped in honey.

Around eight o’clock in the morning, she finished all the work to be done.

What to do with the rest of the day?

I don’t know when she began to dislike watching TV. She felt that turning on the TV was like sharing a room with many people, without any privacy at all. Those people and things would upset her. She would flip through a book at random, but only read three or four pages. The font size of the current books is often too small, and she does not allow the eyes to be too strained. She closed her eyes and called Xiaodu: “Xiaodu Xiaodu, play “Blue Sky.” Xiaodu said: “Okay master, now I will play Bandari’s “Blue Sky” for you.” When the music sounded, she There was a moment of relaxation, like stepping on the beach and slowly sinking into the sea, walking around the room while listening. The sound of the music gradually faded, she seemed to be pulled out of the tide, and anxiety began to haunt her.

Her day is rough!

She’s had a rough year!

She is only fifty-two years old this year and has been a small civil servant all her life. Two years ago, she applied for medical retirement on the grounds of premature heart beat and was granted. She doesn’t know how many years she has left to live. If it was autumn, if it was a cloudy and rainy day, she would worry even more, how would she spend the rest of her life? She can’t wait to take a medicine and sleep, and ten or twenty years will pass—but it may not be death, or suicide. Even she had no fear of never waking up again – she actually tried twice. The first time I took ten estazolam tablets at a time, there was basically no reaction except for a little sleepiness. She added ten pills to herself, twenty pills at a time. Although she fell asleep, she woke up in less than two hours, and she was no longer sleepy. Later, she read news on her mobile phone that a person who wanted to commit suicide took 100 tablets of Diazepam, fell asleep twice, and woke up without feeling anything. Afterwards, I specially wrote a letter of thanks to the drug factory. Later she thought that if a person really wants to fall asleep, he must eat at least a thousand pills. During that period, she begged everywhere as if suffering from obsessive-compulsive disorder, and she actually got ten bottles. She looked at those small white bottles with blue trademarks like treasures, not knowing what she was going to do.

I just want to sleep, maybe I don’t want to kill myself!

She is an only child, and her parents were both cadres during the War of Liberation. Her mother gave birth to her in her forties, and her father was older than her mother. By the time she was in her forties, her parents had already passed away. They are all old and dying.

Slowly, she became an orphan. Although she has received a complete university education and likes to read books on literature, history and philosophy, this does not affect her being an orphan in the slightest—although she is legally overage, she insists on thinking so, and at the same time feels that this idea is not illegal.

Parents are old and dead, although she was sad for a while, but she accepted. She is just often restless. I don’t know from which day she can’t let herself be idle, and she will become very depressed when she is idle, and her mood will be wet like damp. Waking up every morning feeling down. Wearing an old and baggy robe, she stood at the window on the twenty-fifth floor and looked at the ground. On the roads near and far, traffic is surging, scrambling to be the first, like a group of ants. This scenario repeats itself over and over again. She feels that life is meaningless.

She takes at least two baths a day. Clean yourself up at night, sit on a dry and comfortable bed, and meditate for a while. In fact, apart from worry itself, she has nothing to worry about. It’s okay to be alive. Since she was still alive, she was terrified because of it: would a person fall asleep and never wake up again? After all, she still has something on her mind.

She is a native of the city. Her parents left her, plus her own, a total of four properties, all in the best locations. This is a large amount of rental fees received every month in a mega city. The monthly increase in the amount on the card makes her unhappy, and Duojin is also a lot of pressure for her.

Before recovering from the illness, she always felt unwell. After checking and checking, there is really no organic disease in the body. It came more often, and then the doctor prescribed a medicine for her. She read the instructions: it is mainly used for depression. Treatment of panic disorder with or without agoraphobia. She is a little angry, I am a good person, how can I have depression? The doctor persuaded me with good words, saying that if there is no such disease, there will be no side effects after taking it. Out of curiosity, she couldn’t help but take out a tablet, split it in half, and then split one half of the tablet in half again. The doctor asked me to take one tablet, and I took a quarter of a tablet, and I might feel the legendary drug-taking feeling? She ate a quarter of a slice, then simply ate another quarter. She watched the remaining half of it slowly blur in her eyes, and drowsiness quickly struck her. She slept soundly that night, really soundly. When she woke up in the morning, she didn’t get up to look at the ants downstairs, but sat on the bed and cried. I? Suffering from depression?

But she refused to continue taking the drug, assuming she was fine.

That is three to two years, she was too lazy to go to the shopping mall; once in a while, she just went to look around, and she didn’t buy anything. She has absolutely no interest in those formal or party-appropriate dresses and dresses.

She has no occasion.

She doesn’t eat much, and the taste is so light that she can boil vegetables without salt. Her food chain only meets the minimum needs to survive.

If it weren’t for the epidemic control, she would walk in the nearby Zijinshan Park every day. A female doctor told her that you are in good health. Looking at your slender and well-proportioned figure, it means that your body has no organic problems, and it would be better to exercise more. She loved hearing it, and she loved amplifying it. Let me just say, I’m not sick! She believed the female doctor’s words and forced herself to like the park and the sun. In the sunlight, her heart really became clear. The sun supplements her calcium, and the sun will shine on her and she will sweat slightly. Thinking of this kind of warmth and light, she felt a little happy in her heart. Standing in the sun with her hands open, she felt that she was a seedling, a small tree.

Before the epidemic was brought under control, a man came to her home, and they met in the park. It annoyed her that the man had no idea how he knew her address. Holding a pot of bougainvillea in full bloom, he solemnly said, “I cultivated it myself, and it has grown for three years and fifty-seven days. You see, the date of the seedlings is written on the sign. ” Then he added: “It’s very easy to grow, and it’s very skinny.” This is a woody plant with a trunk as thick as a human’s thumb. Talk to her in the crevice of the tree. So the boss’s pot must weigh more than 20 catties, right? He has been hugging his chest, as if holding a sacred object. She finally couldn’t bear to say: “You put it on the ground! Just put it at the door.”

He said: “I tidied up the garden in the morning and saw that it was blooming just right. I thought I would send it here as a companion for you. It’s red and green, so eye-catching.” He crossed his hands and tried to convince her that I should move you into the house. Find a place to set it up.

She understood his thoughts and said, “No, just put it by the door. I might be allergic to hay fever.”

There was a stalemate with the boss for a while, and the atmosphere was very awkward. She just blocked the door. He was holding the flower, his hands were covered with mud, and the heat on his head made the strands of his hair wet with sweat. Then he couldn’t hold on any longer, and finally put the flowers down against the wall by the door. She looked at him, hesitated and said, “Don’t move, I’ll bring you water.”

She brought up a vat of “Nongfu Spring”, the water she usually uses for cooking. The other hand holds soap. She pointed to a place and gave him a hand at the stairs. The water slowly crossed the steps along the stairs, and it was not known how many floors it would flow to. She asked him to soap him three times, and she kept saying, “The palms, the backs of the hands, between the fingers…” When the bucket of water was finally washed, she said, “Don’t move.”

She turned back to the room and took out a semi-dry towel and handed it to him, letting him beat him all over. Everything seems to be over. But his eyes looked at the pot of delicate flowers, and he didn’t intend to leave. She was almost forced to fetch a pair of shoe covers and half opened the door for someone. The man came in, but she blocked the entrance, took a bucket of disinfectant spray, and sprayed him up and down. Then he pointed to the bathroom and said, “Go and wash your hands.”

The man smiled generously, and went to the bathroom to wash his hands carefully with soap. When he came out, he found that a clean cover had been specially spread on the sofa. He knew that it was his specific position, so he walked over lightly and sat down obediently. She brought him a glass of boiled water. He laughed again and said, “This cup…isn’t disposable, can it be used?”

She said: “It’s okay, I will disinfect after you use it.”

The man sat in the woman’s house for about ten minutes that day, drank a glass of water, and hardly spoke. He was in a hurry to leave because of internal urgency, he didn’t dare to expect to use the women’s bathroom.

A few days later, the woman suddenly called him. They have exchanged phone numbers for almost half a year, and they have never used them once. The woman said on the phone: “If it’s convenient, can I trouble you again and move the flowers to the table under the living room window for me.”

He remembered that her living room had floor-to-ceiling windows with wide windowsills. Maybe the designer reserved it for people to grow flowers.

two

The woman’s surname is Wan, and her single name has the word Shui. Her father’s surname is Wan, and her mother’s surname is Shui. Her name is Wan Shui. When I was a child, I lay in my mother’s arms and acted like a baby: “You and Dad have traveled thousands of mountains and rivers. If only I had an older brother, I can call him Wanshan.”

It was just a cute sentence, but the mother’s expression immediately darkened. She was so scared that she never dared to speak nonsense again.

Wan Shui took a walk in the park on time every morning. She has practiced ballet, learned to swim, and has a lot of love for literature. She thinks she was a literary youth when she was young. Even now she has an outstanding temperament. Her hair was cut very short, her figure was thin, her back was straight, and she walked as fast as the wind. Many people who met her for the first time couldn’t help but ask, “Have you been a soldier?” She grinned, and her smile was still very attractive. She said: “My parents were both soldiers, and I also grew up in a compound. They have militarized me since I was a child.”

The word “big courtyard” has a mysterious force, but to her, it is nothing more than a strong outside. In fact, no one knows how much perseverance she has to use to move around here quickly. She was frightened and anxious, unable to stop, as if she would die if she stopped. She is not afraid of death, but she does not want to die. This confuses her. But this kind of entanglement also made her feel that she had a problem: Isn’t it the characteristic of a soldier to not be afraid of death and not want to die? Only when you are not afraid of death can you go to the battlefield bravely, and if you don’t want to die, you can triumph. What are you struggling with?

Often during her walks she would meet a man about her own age. The man’s clothes are basically decent, his height is above average, and he is slightly fat. Unlike her, he always paced leisurely, not figure gait, he walked like a scholar. Wan Shui walked past him without squinting, never looking at him. One day she found that the man’s speed also increased, and she followed him about five steps away from her. She walked three times without getting rid of him. On the fourth lap, she looked back at him provocatively, and asked fiercely, “What do you want to do?” She looked at the sun in the sky, it was almost half past ten. This time is the safest time of day.

The man smiled at her, a kind and gentle smile. He said: “You mobilized my enthusiasm. Following your steps, people will become very energetic.”

She hadn’t seen such a pure and kind smile for a long time. She also saw his clean hands and manicured nails. Well, it’s ok. She said secretly in her heart. Although I don’t know if this “okay” refers to the man or his followers, anyway, she acquiesced. From that day on, they became two people walking together. No one will pay attention to them, others may think that they are just an ordinary couple.

About a month later, she was suddenly absent. The man figured it out, it was almost half a month.

When she finally appeared, the man was startled by her weakness as if recovering from a serious illness. Her face was pale, and her walking speed was obviously slow. After walking for a while, she was sweating. She smiled unnaturally at him, found a sunny chair and sat down. The man walked around again before coming over. The two sat on the same bench with a long distance between them. She took the initiative to say: “I’m sick, acute appendicitis. It’s a minor operation, and I’m still working hard.”

This is the first time they speak normally. The man said: “I’ll just say I’m sick, otherwise with such a rigorous style of yours, you wouldn’t be absent for no reason.” Seeing that she didn’t speak, he said, “It’s not okay if you don’t accept your old age. You must keep a few people’s phone numbers by your side, otherwise you won’t be absent for no reason.” It’s hard to ask for help.”

His tone was full of sincere concern, without any fluff, as if he was thinking about her for a while. Wan Shui was a little moved. She said: “What about you, why are you always alone?” She is a person who is not used to inquiring about other people’s privacy, never. After asking, I felt a little regretful, and a look of shame appeared on my face.

The man asked back, “What about you?”

Wan Shui said, “I’m a celibate.” For some reason, she concealed her previous marriage history. She had been married once, barely for two years. The first year was fine, but the second year he fell ill with gastroesophageal reflux. How to say this kind of disease, if it is not serious, it is not serious, it will not affect work or social interaction; if it is serious, it is serious, and you have to put a 30-40 degree support under your body when sleeping, half lying and half sitting sleep. Every night to soothe him you have to climb up his slope. After taking care of him carefully for more than a year, not only did he not get better, but it got worse. There is no filial son in front of the bed for a hundred days, and neither is a husband and wife, let alone she is a super clean freak. After more than a year, love, love, and sex have worn down thinner than a piece of paper. Later, my husband was invited by his sister to go to the United States for treatment. They also wanted to breathe a sigh of relief, and soon he passed. He adapted to the environment there, and the medical treatment was very effective, and he immigrated after coming and going. Her husband also sincerely invited her to come with her. When her parents were still alive, she refused.

Another year later, the husband filed for divorce, saying that such a long-term separation would be unfair to both of them. Instead, she breathed a sigh of relief, as if she had unloaded a pair of armor, and felt unusually at ease. She bought a four-inch cake, lit candles, and celebrated quietly. One is different from the other, and each is safe. From then on, she refused to get married again. She liked to live alone, and she didn’t have to worry about other people’s feelings when she went to see her parents. Mom and Dad, as always, love her like a little doll. Her happiness by their side is boundless, she doesn’t need to speculate on each other’s thoughts, and doesn’t need to worry about each other’s emotions. Her parents were with her wholeheartedly, until they let go one by one.

She has become a pure self, more and more free, but also more and more closed. It’s okay when I’m at work, I can say a few words every day, it’s all about work. Later, when he retired, he was almost isolated from the world. She has no boyfriend, no girlfriend.

The man said: “I’m used to being alone, it’s good to be alone. I’m comfortable.” The man said again: “My wife is gone.” He hesitated for a while and said it out, “It’s that kind of bad disease. Both sons are in the hospital. In the United States, after studying for a long time, I became naturalized. I went to live for a while, and originally planned to live with my sons for a long time. But they are too busy to chat for a day, and they eat with me for a week It’s a good meal. I wander around alone every day, and I come back after wandering around. It’s still comfortable in China, and my relatives and friends are all there.”

“Can you cook?”

“My son hired an aunt for me to cook two meals a day.”

Wan Shui found that she didn’t have much resistance to this man.

The two talked for a while, and when it was time for dinner, they parted ways. After seeing you again, I feel much more at ease. But still walking one after the other, hardly speaking. One was tired from walking and sat down in the old place. The other sat down too. Everything is natural. Once, the man introduced himself and said: “I am a forestry worker, and I am an expert regardless of size. Plant something yourself.”

For such a huge topic, Wan Shui was unprepared, perhaps because he didn’t have the energy to discuss it, so he said casually, “I’m a waste of time.”

The man said: “My aunt is off today, can I treat you to dinner at noon?”

Wan Shui was taken aback for a moment, then blushed, and said, “I never eat out, I…”

The man said: “I see, you love cleanliness.” He didn’t use the word cleanliness, thinking it was disrespectful. Then he took out his mobile phone to find his QR code, stood up and reached out to her from a distance: “We’ve known each other for so long, let’s add a WeChat.”

She immediately took out her mobile phone and smiled at him. The man understood that she wanted to make up for her apology.

The man added her on WeChat and said, “Your name is Wan Shui, which sounds really nice. Why is there nothing in your circle of friends?”

Wan Shui said: “Your name is Zhang You’an. Your mother must have only one son like you. I hope the gods will protect you.”

Zhang Youan smiled and said, “As she wishes.”

“Hey, your circle of friends is like a botanical garden.”

At that time, Wan Shui’s mood improved a lot, and his body was slowly recovering after the operation. Originally, minimally invasive appendicitis is a minor operation. Lying in bed at night, she would look through Zhang Youan’s Moments to learn about flowers and plants, how to care for woody and herbaceous plants, etc. But they have not been in touch with each other.

Zhang You’an didn’t come to the park for a while, and he didn’t say hello to Wan Shui. Wan Shui naturally wouldn’t ask. She saw on his circle of friends that he rented dozens of acres of land on the beach of the Yellow River and built a log cabin. There is a picture of him planting something in the dirt with his bare feet. Presumably this is the piece of land he touched.

At that time the wheat had just been harvested. Then there was a torrential rain that had never happened in a thousand years, and many people were drowned in this arid northern city. The ground was covered with wounds left by the flood, and she felt that bacteria were everywhere. Wan Shui’s mood suddenly fell again, she no longer went out for a walk, and she had to wash her hands constantly when she was locked in the room. Later, the epidemic resurged, the city was silent, and the streets downstairs were empty, and she could no longer see swarms of “ants”. However, it is not because of this, everything outside the house seems to have nothing to do with her, even if she is not silent, she does not go anywhere. She only goes out to take out the trash once in the dead of night. She does everything quietly, and the neighbors think she comes and goes without a trace. Her home is an empty house.

Later, she didn’t even read Moments. The pot of bougainvillea on the window sill was too lazy to water, but it bloomed more and more, and it was so beautiful that it made one’s heart skip a beat. The hustle and bustle of the colorful flowers seems to be her dream, suspended in a world visible to the naked eye.

It turned out that the flowers were blooming everywhere, like this, but God… She simply turned off all the lights in the house. In the brightly lit night, she couldn’t tell what was what.

three

Wan Shui only opened the door quietly every day when the night was dead and there was no sound to be heard. She was wearing a black and white checkered plastic shower cap for bathing, an N95 mask, a purple raincoat over her skirt, and green half-length rubber shoes on her feet. There are three layers of garbage bags, she is afraid of leaving the smell of garbage in the elevator. In fact, the elevator is full of peculiar smell, even though the exhaust fan keeps blowing. Therefore, taking out the trash is a huge challenge for her. She didn’t want to be discovered, but with a slight knock on the door, the sensor light in the stairwell turned on. She saw a miracle. In the place where the pot of bougainvillea was placed, there were two dark green square plastic plates side by side. One plate was made of chives raised in clear water, and the other was made of coriander grown in soil. One yellow and one green, it is really beautiful under the light of the quiet night. The yellow ones are like the feathers of goslings, and the green ones are like prehistoric plants on the seabed. She looked again and again, but there was not a single leaf left, and it was fresh and tender.

When she came back after taking out the trash, the two trays were still there. She bent down to look again, and for the first time, she sniffed the fragrance of chives and coriander without disgust. Reluctantly closed the door. She washed her hands and feet again, lay down on the bed, and when she was about to turn off the phone and go to sleep, she found an unread wechat message. She was taken aback because her mobile phone had never received a WeChat message. She opened it tremblingly, and it turned out that it was Zhang Youan who sent it two hours ago: “Hello, Ms. Wanshui, these are two potted plants I planted without using chemical fertilizers or pesticides. I know you are taboo against bacteria outside, so after cleaning them specially, I commissioned The gatekeeper in the community will deliver it to your door. You have been living at home for a long time, and chlorophyll is indispensable. I hope you can taste the fruits of my labor. If you are really worried, just put it on the window sill and enjoy it as a scenery.”

two hours ago? Why didn’t he knock on the door? I probably sent a WeChat message and I didn’t reply, for fear of disturbing me. However, I rarely look at my phone! She wanted to reply, but she didn’t know what to say for a long time. Then I got out of bed and took a clean rag, opened the door, and carefully wiped the already clean plastic tray. The tray is very light and delicate, which shows his hard work. She carefully put them on the window sill, tidied up and lay back on the bed. I checked on Baidu, and the chives can be cut with scissors and eaten, leaving the roots, changing the water every day, and they can still grow. As for coriander, she knew it, her mother had grown it in her yard when she was a child. Just pinch the tip of the seedling and it will have the ability to regrow without damaging the roots. She fell asleep holding her mobile phone that day, with the fragrance of coriander in her mouth all night. When she woke up the next day, she realized that she hadn’t taken Valium last night. Do these two plants have the effect of helping sleep?

She thawed a Yellow River carp in the refrigerator that was prepared for containment, removed the skin, and only took the lean meat from the spine on both sides. Smash it with the back of a knife and put it in a glass bowl, marinate it with a little light soy sauce and cooking wine. Then it was served with a dollop of wheat flour. Finally, I carefully cut a handful of chives with scissors, and picked a pinch of coriander leaves.

Wan Shui stewed the fish bones in clear water, put a spring onion into the soup, put a few slices of ginger, and two spoons of white pepper. After the water boils, turn it to a small fire and boil it slowly, as if you are cooking your own days.

Finely chop the chives, put them into the marinated fish, mix well, and pour a little ground sesame oil. After the noodles were ready, they were taken out and kneaded, pulled into small dough, and rolled into round dumpling wrappers one by one. Make dumplings quickly so that the fragrance of chives can be locked into the dough. In the dense water vapor, my mother said with a smile: Niuniu, let the small rolling pin shake the dough in circles, the middle is thick and four circles are thin, so that when wrapping, you can forcefully pack a bag of vegetables, the stuffing is big and the skin is thin . At that time, she was twelve or thirteen years old… She really saw her mother for a moment, and she was so happy that tears rolled out.

A group of dumplings like white geese are cooked. Give mom four first, then give dad six, dad eats more than mom. There are always a dozen of them in her own bowl, and she tastes the umami after eating them all in one sitting. The fish soup was already thick, so she twisted a pinch of coriander and put it in an empty bowl, then added it to the boiling soup, tasting it slowly mouthful by mouthful. Mom is telling, Niuniu, live well, how good life is today, it is so good that I can’t even think of it! When my mother was marching and fighting, she was so hungry that she dug out the raw potatoes in the field with mud, and sent them to her mouth before she could wipe them clean. A few people who were in a hurry took ropes and tied them into a string one by one, so that they could sleep while walking. Mom has never taken any sleeping pills in her whole life. Open your mouth to eat when you are hungry, and sleep when you are sleepy. At that time, Dad often criticized Mom, such a good child, why did he get used to being the Princess and the Pea?

She ate and drank enough, and the sun just shone into the room, and she dozed off on the dining table under the west window. Mom and Dad haven’t nagged her for a long time.

She was warmed by the sun after autumn, and she felt lucky to be resurrected from the dead.

Originally, I wanted to reply Zhang Youan’s WeChat message, but after thinking about it, I still called him. She said on the phone that the dumplings stuffed with chives are too fresh, and it has been a long time since I ate them like this. She herself was a little surprised by that voice, it sounded like a baby. But no, when you take a nap at noon, making dumplings with your mother, you are the age of acting like a baby! She hasn’t recovered from the dream until now.

Zhang Youan said: “Finally dare to chat with me, aren’t you afraid of germs passing through the phone?”

Wan Shui also smiled here: “I’ll use alcohol pads to disinfect the phone after I’m done typing.”

Another day, at seven or eight o’clock in the evening, Wan Shui thought about making a phone call. Just as he was hesitating, Zhang You’an called. She couldn’t help but burst into joy. After answering the phone, I babbled a lot of nonsense about what books I read and what I ate; bougainvillea is really tenacious in life. After trying it out, I didn’t drink water for a week, and it became more and more blooming. After talking about myself, I finally asked, “What about you, what do you do all day?”

Zhang You’an said: “I’m cultivating seedlings on the Yellow River beach! I don’t even need to wear a mask, and I’m the only one downhill.”

“It’s good to be alone!” she said yearningly.

Zhang You’an said: “I planted 30 old local corns, which are almost ripe, and the fresh corn can be roasted and eaten. However, you can’t roast it at home.”

Wan Shui said, “Why can’t it be baked? I have an electric oven.”

“Bake it in an oven?” Zhang You’an thought for a while, “Yes, yes, it’s the same with an oven.”

“I see, it’s still delicious grilled over charcoal fire.” Wan Shui smiled crisply, “I seem to be competing for food, such a greedy mouth.”

After that, I couldn’t tell who called who. She doesn’t seem to care about that anymore. We chatted for half an hour at the beginning, and gradually turned into an hour, and then the time scale disappeared, and sometimes we chatted until late at night. The first three emperors, the last five emperors; the south of the mountain, the north of the sea. Anyway, a small topic will be magnified into a topic.

Four

Zhang Youan’s hometown is in the countryside. His father is strong and capable. Burning bricks and baking tiles, raising rabbits and weaving baskets, anyway, it is a “stop idle”. His family lived by the Yellow River, and rushes and weeds grew wildly everywhere. When they were basking in the sun and chatting, he could weave a mat and secretly exchange two yuan at the market in the dark. There are three elder sisters on Zhang Youan, and his father sent all four children to school. When Zhang Youan was in high school, the college entrance examination system was restored, and his three older sisters were admitted to school one after another. After the reform and opening up, his father contracted the brick kiln in the village. His father didn’t let him take care of the family affairs, held his head down and only read sage books. Sure enough, Zhang Youan was admitted as the number one scholar in the county and went to Beijing Forestry University.

There were four college students in a row—in those days, a technical secondary school was also called a college student, but in fact his three older sisters were all technical secondary school students—supported, and his father became more courageous. One kiln turned into six kilns, and later turned into a brick and tile factory. After the land was contracted, the land of each family was planted by each family, and the grain yield per mu suddenly doubled several times. Zhang Cunyou’s family at the back of the village grows apples, and one year’s harvest is worth three years’ worth of food. Everyone changed to plant fruit trees, because they were close to the city, and soon made money. Zhang Cunyou’s family built four tile-roofed houses, all using materials from his family. Zhang Dazui from the back of the village often ran to the city. The house was built two years late, and the prefabricated panels were pulled back from the city to build a bungalow. Zhang Youan’s father wandered around twice with his hands behind his back, adding prefabricated panels to his brick and tile factory, and his family was the first to live in a three-story building. Every family in the village followed suit, and the production of bricks and prefabricated panels was not enough to sell. All of a sudden, Boss Zhang became a well-known figure.

Someone introduced Zhang Youan to him through his sister. She is the daughter of a township cadre’s family, and she is studying in a technical secondary school in the county. His sister said that she was good-looking, and a small leader of their unit personally introduced her, so she knew the basics. Looking for a daughter of a cadre’s family, and his own daughter’s political trial, of course his father liked it very much, so the two met during the holidays. A big white face like a silver basin, with happy eyebrows and smiling eyes. With such a solid family background and super feminine characteristics, how can Zhang Youan, who has never been in a relationship, have the power to fight back? He was dizzy all of a sudden, like a lamb for her slaughter. After meeting him twice, the girl took the initiative to kiss him. She knew better than him, and she took his hand and stuffed it from the collar to the two big tits. Later, she also took off her clothes first. The matter was over at once, and he was so ashamed that he was a little at a loss. The girl comforted and said, it’s okay, it will be fine slowly.

Zhang Youan’s mother overheard all the good things they did together from outside the window. This is also their custom. When they went out, his mother squeezed into the room to watch. The bed was dirty, but he didn’t see any redness, so he was stunned immediately. Immediately find a matchmaker. The matchmaker said that it’s too late for the raw rice to be cooked. Your son is a college student, and he moved him. How dare you say you regret it? His mother cried all the way back, dragged her son into her room and scolded her for a long time. Zhang Youan didn’t understand these things at all, so he will interrogate the girl another day. The girl said that she had engaged in marriage before, and they talked for three years. Later, she was admitted to school, and the partner broke up after failing the exam. I asked again, and it was said that there was another one in school, and after two years of talking, that person passed the postgraduate entrance examination, so he broke up with her. She spoke calmly, but he heard the lightning and thunder, and he felt like dying. The matter has come to this point, there is no other way to do it, so I gritted my teeth and asked the fatal question: Have you ever slept with someone else? He closed his eyes and only wanted to hear a negative answer. Even if it is a lie, let him cover his face. But people admitted it in a daze, and the reason was very good. At that time, I was too young and ignorant. But originally I wanted to live together. Zhang You’an has read so many books, and he is still excellent in the ideological and political courses. Knowing that this is because the tofu fell into the ashes, he can’t brag or beat him, and he feels as uncomfortable as if he ate half a fly.

The other girl just stayed in his house generously and never left. During the day he was still angry and annoyed, but at night when he saw her white body, he hated but couldn’t help exerting all his strength. He had mixed feelings in his heart, but this matter could only fall into his own hands, his father didn’t know, and his mother didn’t dare to say it, his thin and small narrow face became more and more withered and yellow. After finally surviving the holidays, it was time to go back to school, but the girl said she was pregnant, and asked him to ask his father what to do. Only then did he wake up like a dream, knowing that there would be consequences for what he did in Dunlun. But hesitantly, still refused to tell dad. The girl didn’t care about it, and told his father about it. His father was so happy that he didn’t want him, saying that he was willing to let Liumenyao go, but he had to keep his grandson. My son is still a year away from graduation, so he gets on the bus first and then buys the ticket, and the piece of paper waits until he graduates. During the banquet, Zhang You’an excused the school to notify him to return to school urgently, and he slipped away overnight. His father arranged for Chuichuidada to serve more than a dozen tables. The daughter-in-law knew she was wrong, so she suppressed her mother’s family to make trouble. Things went well.

Before Zhang Youan graduated from university, his eldest son was born. His father looked at the big fat grandson so happy that he couldn’t close his mouth from ear to ear, and asked his sister to write to him immediately to report the great news. Zhang You’an opened the letter and read it, wishing he could fall to the ground and die. But things have come to this point, and as a father, he had no choice but to fill in his hometown in his graduation aspirations, and he was assigned to the county forestry bureau after graduation. The daughter-in-law works as a nurse in the township hospital, and he doesn’t come back once a month or two. The daughter-in-law urged to get the certificate, and he said that the children have come out, so what’s the point of not getting the certificate? Make do with it.

It is not a solution for Zhang Youan not to come back. Her mother made a move and found a folk remedy for her daughter. Tell her to find him in the city. He had just arrived at a new unit, and his wife didn’t dare to say anything when she came, but she was a virtuous person. She bought a frying pan, set up a small electric stove in the house, and served vegetables and wine. The two squeezed into a small bed in the single dormitory, and they got pregnant again after going back and forth. At that time, family planning was strictly enforced, and the daughter-in-law was in hiding. At seven and a half months, she was given oxytocin and gave birth to a boy, who was raised by her sister-in-law. Zhang You’an could only admit it, and held the handle in other people’s hands, and she was sure of the family planning super birth. Later, he transferred her to the city through his own relationship, and the work unit gave her two public houses, which can be regarded as a reunion. But the two husbands and wives were at odds with each other, and the quarrel never stopped. The daughter-in-law was supported by two big fat boys, and she felt like she had turned over, and she never let him quarrel. Zhang You’an was forced to do nothing. After reviewing for a year, he went back to school to study for a master’s degree. The school didn’t even know that he was married, and there were quite a few introductions, but he rejected them all. There was a female classmate who really liked him, and he liked her too, and had an affair with her for two years for no apparent reason. That female classmate took it seriously and wanted to marry him desperately. Seeing that he couldn’t escape, he talked about the family affairs. The girl cried and said she didn’t care. He also wanted to say he didn’t care. But your son is already that old, don’t you care? Father cares, mother cares, and thousands of people in the village care! The girl cried several times with snot and tears, but she didn’t cry the Great Wall down, and married someone else in a fit of anger.

He chose to return to the Provincial Forestry Research Institute after graduation. The daughter-in-law has been in the county, and she can’t reach her if she wants to quarrel. The two sons grew up amidst the noise of their parents, and they were able to study hard. After graduating from university, the boss went to study in the United States, and later instructed his younger brother to follow the same path. Five years ago, the daughter-in-law suffered from ovarian cancer and kept it from her husband. In fact, she let herself go, missed the best time for treatment, and died.

After telling her own story, Zhang You’an said: “I have lived like this for half my life. Thinking about it carefully, I feel sorry for her. One is that I was ignorant when I was young, and I shouldn’t be so impulsive. The other is what happened before. I It’s too fussy, my son is already that old.”

Wan Shui said: “Yes, you really shouldn’t. The past is the mother of your child after all.”

Zhang Youan sighed for a long time, and then said sadly: “She dragged on for two years, and I did my best to serve her for two years. Seeing that she was dying, she cried and told me that she was ignorant when she was young, and now This result is all because I have committed too many sins. I blocked her mouth and said that I was even more ignorant, and I will live with her well when she recovers from her illness. Afterwards, she still left, and finally took my hand and said, If you serve me for two years, I will be satisfied in this life!”

This made Wan Shui sobbing on the phone, not knowing whether it was his wife or him who was crying.

“Have you thought about finding another partner?” Putting this aside, she wouldn’t ask even if she was killed.

“I’ve thought about it, I want to taste the taste of love. But at this age, where is the right one?”

Her voice suddenly calmed down: “That’s right. Marriage is actually quite scary. If you have a bad life, it’s not as easy as being alone.”

He asked her, “What about you?”

She said: “I was actually married. My little things are as light as plain water. The children of my father’s comrades-in-arms reach the age of marriage. As soon as the parents of both parties appoint, we will get married. We are very friendly, like brothers and sisters. But brothers and sisters also quarreled. We were better than brothers and sisters, and we never quarreled. Later, he immigrated, and I didn’t want to go, so I left. Anyway, that’s all. I said I was married, but I didn’t. Same. After two years, when we parted, I realized that I was married.”

“Then why haven’t you been looking for it since then?”

“I am afraid of marriage and I am resistant to all men. When I separated from my ex-husband, I felt relaxed. When we were together, my breathing was tense every day. The doctor said that this is because I have been married for two years and have not been pregnant. The reason. Now thinking about men and women, I still feel nervous. I don’t think it’s good to live with anyone. I can’t have children, so why bother to harm others.”

five

Wan Zhenshan studied foreign studies, went to Kaifeng alone when he was a teenager, and joined the Communist Party at school. Before finishing college, the organization sent him back to his hometown Xinyang to engage in the peasant movement in southern Henan. According to the current statement, his family was the richest man in the eastern Dabie Mountains back then. Now the former site of the first peasant movement branch of the Red Revolution Education Base is his family’s house. His father spent hundreds of dollars in cash for him to study, and he became a rebellious son. When he came back to lead the peasant association to divide his own fields, his father sprayed blood three feet away and died on the spot. While preparing for his father’s funeral, he told his clansmen that this was the end of the stubborn feudal landlords. In fact, behind his back, he secretly kowtowed to his father a few times and cried a lot. His father was a landlord, but not a bully; he was a scholar, but not an evil gentry. He reads sage books and doesn’t marry a concubine, so he is the only son. He blamed his father in his heart, why can’t he think about it so much? The fields are distributed to the villagers. How good is it that everyone has work and food to eat? You can’t come to death in this breath, can’t you take away any amount of property?

The peasant movement was carried out vigorously, and the Kuomintang never stopped counterattacking. Under the pressure of powerful firepower, they temporarily hid in the mountains. There was a shortage of food on the mountain, so he sent someone to bring a letter to his family to send food up the mountain. His mother was crying heartbroken. His “communist bandit” home had already been ransacked and destroyed by the Kuomintang. His mother was afraid that her son would starve to death, so she asked her daughter-in-law, who was three months pregnant, to go out to beg for food. She had to save a basket of dry food in two days and carry it to her husband herself. Wan Zhenshan followed the food brought by his daughter-in-law, and was worried when he learned that his mother was alone at home, hiding in the wall, so he sent a soldier to take his daughter down the mountain overnight. The daughter-in-law was pregnant. In order to save her husband, she didn’t eat a bite for two days. When she went down the mountain, her legs gave way and she fell to the ground, killing two people. The little soldier cried and carried him back to the mountain. Wan Zhenshan wrapped his wife in his only old quilt and buried him on the mountain. He took advantage of a dark and stormy night to dive back home, only to find that it was too late. His mother believed in Buddhism, so she only brought a pot of water when she entered the wall, persisted for five days, and sat on the wall. At this time, Wan Zhenshan was like a thousand arrows piercing his heart. He opened his father’s coffin with his own hands, buried his mother and father together, and hated the Kuomintang reactionaries. From then on, he had nothing to worry about, and he devoted himself to beating Lao Jiang. In 1934, Wu Huanxian, political commissar of the 25th Red Army, read the “Declaration of the Long March” in Hejiachong Village in the Dabie Mountains. Wan Zhenshan then headed north, when he was just twenty years old.

From then on, Wan Zhenshan fought in the south and in the north. Later, he was injured in the Battle of Huaihai, and met the female nurse Shui Wen in the field hospital. Shuiwen is ten years younger than him, and she is a delicate southern woman. The two chatted with blood and tears. Shuiwen’s eldest brother participated in the Northern Expedition and later joined the Communist Party. After graduating from the Whampoa Military Academy, my younger brother once joined the New Army of the Kuomintang to fight in Burma, and his position was the deputy. On the eve of liberation, he fled to Taiwan. Her father was a patriotic gentleman in Kunming city and donated all his family property to the Communist Party. However, the family was bloodbathed by the Kuomintang. Her father, mother, and pregnant aunt were all spared. Shuiwen was studying in a church school at the time and escaped a catastrophe. Her brother sent someone to take her to the team overnight, and she grew up on horseback.

After Wan Zhenshan was discharged from the hospital, he reported to the organization to apply for marriage. After marriage, the two fought with the army all the way, getting together less and leaving more, but they still gave birth to two baby boys. At that time, the troops were not allowed to march with babies, and the children were handed over to the local villagers to raise them. After the liberation, the couple searched through the organization, and Shui Wen personally followed the route they fought back then, but failed. Shui Wen gave birth to her daughter Wan Shui when she was almost forty years old. At that time, her husband Wan Zhenshan was over half a century old.

Wan Shui said: “After liberation, my parents stayed in the army. I was also born in the army compound. But because my younger uncle was a senior general of the Kuomintang and later fled to Taiwan, the two of them have not been affected by family history. Reuse. Later, my father resigned to his fate. He was old and couldn’t run anymore, so he asked to return to his hometown to work. My father returned to the local area and served as the deputy secretary of half a province in the contiguous area. Later, our relationship with Taiwan was repaired, and my mother Because of the special relationship with Taiwan, he became the vice chairman of the provincial CPPCC.”

Zhang You’an said: “Wan Shui, I really can’t see that you are still a high-ranking son.”

“A high-ranking student?” Wan Shui smiled, noncommittal.

“What kind of kid do you think I look like?” Zhang Youan teased her.

“Are you?” Wan Shui said seriously, “If you look at it big, you look like the son of a peasant entrepreneur; if you look at it small, you look like the son of a brick factory owner.”

Zhang Youan burst out laughing.

Wan Shui also smiled happily, and she said: “We chatted like this, which made me forget the time. I’m counting the seconds to survive this lockdown. It’s nice to have someone to chat with. Let me give you a military salute, thank you Comrade Zhang!”

Zhang You’an said: “I should thank you. I have vomited to you the secret buried in my heart for half my life. It can be regarded as self-salvation!”

Wan Shui said, “Old Zhang, have you ever thought about committing suicide?”

“No. Never.” Zhang You’an said solemnly, “Why did you commit suicide? As long as you are alive, one day you will be able to share the secrets in your heart with others. I didn’t say it before, but I just haven’t met the right person. If you don’t say anything, you can If I die, doesn’t that mean I’ve lived my whole life in vain?”

Wan Shui said: “I have thought about it many times, but there is no reason to commit suicide. If there is, the only reason is that life is meaningless. My parents lived to be eighty or ninety years old, and they lived for life every day. They only I have a daughter, and I didn’t give birth to them. Tell me, how lonely are they in their hearts?”

Zhang You’an said: “That’s because you are alone for them. How do you know what they are thinking in their hearts? They have gone through many battles and come here under the hail of bullets. They live without regard for life and death. Their hearts and realms are beyond the comprehension of ordinary people. Otherwise, how can we live to such an old age? People are too fragile now, and they are all enjoying more blessings.”

“You are criticizing me for being hypocritical.” She said angrily, “You are so happy all day, are you really happy?”

“There are so many ways to be happy. I’m busy. It’s a day.” Zhang You’an’s mood suddenly rose, “I’m very busy! Serving the land is a big deal. I rented 60 acres of river beach nursery to raise seedlings. One person, working for a day, eating some fresh things that grow in the soil, and then falling asleep, that is the unity of nature and man! How can there be any thought of death!”

“Hey, tell me about your cabin, what’s there?”

“There is a kitchen, which is where I cook. There is a living room, which is actually where I eat and drink tea. I have never received guests. There is also a bedroom, which has a bathroom, where I go to the toilet. A place to take a bath. Although I am committed to the land, I have to take a bath twice a day. I work in the mud for a day, so I can’t do without a bath, and I try to be a clean person.”

Wan Shui said, “Don’t laugh at me!”

“I have a big bed in my bedroom. I am old and tired after a long day, and I like to sleep a little more. I lie down, like a big character. Everything is quiet, and I feel that the whole world is mine.”

Wan Shui thought to herself, if she could bask in the sun every day and fall asleep when she lay down at night, her world might be better. She said: “Today, people are really envious and jealous! You are like an ancient hermit, living the life of Tao Yuanming, and you are your own king.”

Zhang Youan said: “Everyone is their own king, it depends on how you choose to rule yourself.”

Wan Shui laughed and said, “Philosopher! You and Diogenes are only one barrel away.”

“The Yellow River beach is full of loess, do you have the courage to visit it?”

“Of course! I have a hat, a mask, a raincoat, and rubber shoes. Don’t I go for a walk in the park every day?”

six

On the days of lockdown, the streets were silent, only the lights of the city were flickering. Wan Shui didn’t want her life to be so cold and lonely anymore, she turned on all the lights, and looked at what she had from room to room, and suddenly felt that they were all so useful and cute. Then, she turned off the light, sat on the clean, dry, and soft bed, opened the curtains, and watched the colorful streamers outside. If only the end of the world was like this, her bed was the ark. She was floated by the light, she didn’t care where she went.

God opened another window for her, and her world is no longer closed. With the lights off, she whispered to someone every day. He was saying: “I told that female classmate about getting a wife at home, and she said she didn’t care. She is not very beautiful, but her eyes are bright. A well-educated woman has a look in her eyes, They can control their own destiny, so they live confidently. The two of us are sitting in a small western restaurant. It is snowing heavily outside. Looking through the glass window, the snowflakes in the light and the trees hanging on the dead branches look like oil paintings. The first drink is Coffee, then changed to tea, and then changed to a bottle of red wine. The female classmate ordered it, but in order not to let her drink too much, I drank too much myself. The female classmate led me to her dormitory, and she took off her clothes and got into the Under the quilt. I sat on the small sofa. I was very sleepy. I drank red wine and easily fell asleep. Then she came down barefoot and pulled me to the bed. I lay next to her in my coat and pretended to be asleep at first. Then I really fell asleep and slept until dawn. Maybe it was a little while before dawn, I got up and left quietly. I knew she was awake, but she didn’t speak.”

“Oh, wearing clothes? Lying in someone else’s bed in clothes full of germs, my God, how could she be willing?”

“I’m so sleepy.”

“Then, you must also be in love with him, right?”

“It can’t be called love, it’s a good impression.”

“I like women who are simple and clear,” he added.

“Maybe you don’t know it yourself, maybe you are fettered by your own wife and children. I think you must love her, otherwise, you wouldn’t go back to the dormitory with her.”

“I am drunk.”

“I still dare not admit it.”

“I must have loved it!”

“I really didn’t think about it.”

“Well, you say yes.” He wanted to end the topic quickly, “Are you unhappy?”

She suddenly became ashamed and anxious to defend, “Why am I unhappy? What nonsense are you talking about? How could I be unhappy about irrelevant people and things?” She scolded.

“Look, I know you’re upset! Well, since it’s irrelevant, I won’t talk about it in the future. Oh, by the way, the crabapple I planted has bloomed. The flowers are clusters of bright red, and the leaves It’s big and big, and the pockmarks on the leaves are beautiful. Someday I’ll give you a pot, okay?”

“I like glass crabapple. The leaves are as thick as emeralds, and the flowers are red. It is the cleanest plant. I also like gardenia and jasmine. They are beautiful and clean.”

“Then I will find a way to send you a pot in the past two days. However, I quietly put it at your door. It is too troublesome to wash your hands and disinfect at your place.”

She became annoyed, “Hmph, what do you want to say. Compared with your female classmates who can let you into the bed without taking off their clothes, I really have something wrong with me, right?” She actually became a little angry.

“You man, aren’t we talking about crabapple flowers?”

“I don’t want crabapple flowers anymore, and I don’t invite you to drink. People who drink alcohol only care about crabapple flowers when they are drunk and awake.”

“You man, if I don’t say it, you have to let me say it. Fortunately, you still study philosophy. When you can face up to your own history, you will almost forget it.”

“However, I can’t face it squarely. Because I haven’t received a Ph. D., I’m just a woman who has studied philosophy for several years. It’s boring and boring. There’s no light in my eyes.”

“I’ve been letting go for thirty-one years, and you can’t let go just by listening to it.”

“You still don’t care about it, you can remember it so clearly for thirty-one years?”

“I surrender, don’t be angry. Let’s talk about what you want to hear.”

“Are you blaming me? Oh, I’m really troubled. I’m sorry, I’m sorry, there should be an apology here.” She blushed, and suddenly woke up and unconsciously made another big mistake.

“I’m a good person.” He laughed honestly on the other end of the phone, “It’s just not easy to prove that I’m a good person.”

When she hung up the phone that night, she was really ashamed. Did she suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder again? What does other people’s affairs have to do with her? She regretted it too much, and her heart was flustered. I got up in a hurry and turned off all the lights, took a piece of Valium, and didn’t feel sleepy until twelve o’clock. Later, I felt that if I didn’t sleep for a while, I would not be able to hold on tomorrow, so I got up and ate another piece, and I drove the Himalaya to listen to the Tao Te Ching, and fell asleep at some point. Sometimes awake and sometimes confused in the dream, the voice on the phone rang all night, and she didn’t bother to turn it off.

She felt much more sober the next day, and felt even more ashamed of what she had done the night before. What’s wrong with me? What are you doing? It spoiled a good chat. Even so, she was not ashamed to disturb others. At eight or nine o’clock in the evening, Zhang Youan called. She accepted it, and was actually happy in her heart.

After all, there was a little unhappiness last night, and the two of them were cautious when they started talking, as if avoiding landmines. She talks less and listens more. He also tried to talk to her about topics that were far from reality, and told her about flowers and trees all night. “I raised an acre of Albizia juliensis seedlings, a deciduous tree, and I like a warm, humid and sunny environment. The leaves are fine and broken, and the filaments are pink in clusters. They are the most suitable ornamental plants to be planted on pedestrian roads.”

She listened, and suddenly returned to the scene when she was five or six years old. In the yard of their house, there is a row of huge silk tree, which must be forty or fifty years old. The crown of the tree is lush, and the whole yard is covered with thick shade, which looks gloomy and mysterious. The pink flowers bloom regardless, from spring to summer. She and her mother spread out a bamboo mat, she lay down, and her mother sat. Mom has to shake the cattail fan to fight mosquitoes for her.

She said, “velvet tree.”

Mom said: “That’s called Acacia.”

She said, “No, it’s the velvet flower tree!”

The velvet flowers on the tree would pop off one by one at any time, and when I picked it up, it was cool and fluffy, not fragrant, but it had a sweet taste. She was naughty, picked one and put it on her forehead, and another on her nose. Later she fell asleep and was carried into the house by her mother.

Waking up in the morning, she got up and looked. Wow, the mat has turned into a painting. Look at the ground again, there are flower balls everywhere. The workers wanted to sweep the yard, but she stopped them. Dad smiled and said: “Keep it, let her play!” When I came back from school at noon, I found that the flowers were all wilted. She stood under the tree and was sad for a long time. At that time, she was very surprised, why the tree has such great strength, it falls every day and blooms every day, as if it is endless.

As she listened and thought about it, her eyes became moist. She said: “You can build a plum garden, it will bloom in the twelfth lunar month. My mother likes wintersweet, she always said: ‘The wintersweet is not a plum, and one flower is fragrant for ten miles.” She didn’t tell him that she was born in the twelfth lunar month. The nanny said: “This child was born with a fragrant, cold fragrance.” The mother said: “It must be the plum blossoms in the corner.”

Zhang You’an said: “I just said to get you a few pots of plums, in case you think they are cold.”

seven

Zhang Youan didn’t wait for the plum blossoms to bloom. His eldest son was going to have a wedding on Christmas and invited him to the United States. He left in a hurry, managed to get a ticket at night, and set off for Shanghai the next morning. He had no choice but to say goodbye to Wan Shui on the phone.

Zhang Youan went smoothly when he left the country, but it was very troublesome to come back. Not to mention that it is difficult to get a ticket, even if you can come back, you have to go through multiple quarantines. His son persuaded him: “Dad, you are alone everywhere anyway, so let’s celebrate the New Year in the United States! You cook good food, and let Chinese culture flourish here.” He thought about it, and he really didn’t agree with his son’s reason. He refused, so he asked his students to hire two people to help him take care of the nursery.

He lives in the eastern part of the United States, and the time is exactly twelve hours wrong. Coupled with the dislocation of the rest time, the two of them don’t call often, but send emails or leave messages on WeChat irregularly. Zhang Youan sometimes sends some pictures he took with his mobile phone. Wan Shui woke up and turned on the computer, the screen was full of scenery. Not to mention, the photography is top-notch. She often praised him like this. He said, it’s not that I have a high level of photography, but that the scenery here is so beautiful that a random photo becomes a screensaver. Sometimes she would not receive news for several days in a row. It turned out that he had gone to Las Vegas to see Red Rock Gorge. In the pictures sent later, he looked energetic, with a bright red down jacket and a blue snow cap, looking energetic like a young man.

Wan Shui’s life has returned to the way it used to be. One day, she didn’t know what to think of, and she stood at the window on the twenty-fifth floor and looked down again. She saw the scene of the past again, the traffic on the roads near and far was surging, like a group of ants. The lockdown was lifted, and the streets were full of traffic again. It seems that the epidemic has never happened, and it seems that there has never been a heavy rain. The people who disappeared disappeared forever, and I didn’t know who and who, anyway, everyone she knew was alive and well. Wan Shui no longer went to Purple Mountain Park. She heard that a wall in that park collapsed and killed a person who was sheltering from the rain. Some people also retorted, how can it be, the walls are well kept. In fact, she didn’t want to go. It’s boring to be alone. She didn’t even want to continue walking, and occasionally went out in a thick old long down jacket, a hat, a mask, and a scarf. The hat and scarf were old too, dusty and out of season, though well washed. She was walking on the main road and saw those young women wearing skirts and long boots, with bare legs exposed in the middle, and the white down jackets outside were very dazzling in the sun. The woolen hats of the girls are also fashionable, and they are worn by those who admire them. No one appreciates Wan Shui, who is she wearing it for? She didn’t bother to buy new clothes because of this.

One day, Zhang Youan posted a photo of him in Philadelphia. There is a picture of him and a very western-style middle-aged woman, slightly plump, with a round face and round eyes, full of joy. She didn’t ask who it was. Zhang Youan took the initiative to explain: “My colleague at work immigrated in the middle. She met my eldest son, and he helped me make an appointment.”

Wan Shui said without thinking, “Bless you all!”

Zhang You’an said: “What kind of blessing is this? It’s just a colleague. We made an appointment to travel together, and she happened to have never been to Philadelphia.”

Wan Shui said: “This is more worthy of blessing.”

Zhang You’an didn’t explain anymore. This made Wan Shui somewhat disappointed. She thought, maybe what he thought was, let her do what she wanted! He and Wan Shui have no reason to explain.

Wan Shui eats three meals a day carefully to ensure adequate nutrition. She wanted to make herself fatter, but she was getting thinner and thinner. Later Zhang Youan asked her to send a photo, she hesitated for a long time before taking a selfie standing in front of the bougainvillea, with a little backlight. Zhang You’an looked at it and said, “Wan Shui, you belong to the Albizia family, and you are suitable for a sunny environment. You should go out for a walk!”

Wan Shui didn’t know where he got the energy, and bought a plane ticket to fly to Sanya the next day. This is her first time traveling alone. My parents were there at that time, and they had been to Beijing, Hangzhou, Sichuan and Northeast China together. Later, I went to Yunnan with my ex-husband. I can’t say how much I like it, at least the hygienic problems of the hotel give her a headache. She prefers to stay at home.

Wan Shui stayed at the Atlantis Hotel. She was willing to spend money, but she had nowhere to spend it. She didn’t know that Sanya in the twelfth lunar month was like summer, and the clothes she brought were still thick. Anyway, I didn’t bring a few pieces, and the box was full of sheets towels, slippers, toothbrushes, portable kettles and so on. She basically doesn’t use the things in the hotel, it’s too dirty. She bought two plain single clothes in the hotel lobby, and she felt unexpectedly relaxed in them. She went to eat the buffet, there were white porridge and seafood porridge, boiled shrimp and Chinese kale, and she ate very well. She originally wanted the Poseidon Undersea Suite, but it was booked out two months ago. I had to choose the best sea view room. After a day of tossing and tiring, the windows were still open, so I fell asleep in the sea breeze.

The next day she just took a walk on the nearby beach, and then lay on a chair under an umbrella to enjoy the sea breeze. On the third day, she bought a skirt-style swimsuit, and actually went down into the water and floated for a long time. When she was a child, she received professional swimming training in the Children’s Palace, but she never came in handy. Although she was a little thinner, she belonged to that kind of small frame, her body was plump everywhere, and she looked a lot younger in a swimsuit. Her skin needs moisture too much, she is fair, and after soaking it, it is glowing with porcelain white light.

She has always thought that traveling is terrible, and traveling alone is even more terrible. Now she feels fine.

She stopped thinking about fat and thin, almost forgot. There is no one she knows here, so she comes here no matter how comfortable she is. Nobody paid attention to her, and she paid no attention to anyone else. She relaxed and gained a few kilograms.

Once, she was tired from swimming, so she spread a bath towel under the umbrella for a while. Opening her eyes, she found a man in his forties lying on another chair, and that man was looking at her. She thought she was going to scream, but found that there was no panic in her heart. The man nodded to her, and she nodded to him. Later, they met again while swimming, and even greeted each other. Later, when we met at a restaurant for dinner, the man naturally sat next to her, and she didn’t refuse. She has been able to live freely in the crowd, which satisfies her. In the next few days, she ran into this man several times. She is not disgusted, this is a gentle man. She remembered that they had also spoken a few words. Once he said to her: “If you are resting in Sanya for a long time, it is better to rent an apartment hotel, which will save a lot of money.” She just smiled. There was noncommittal in that smile, and there was also an element of thanking him for his concern. Another time he said: “You like this place, why don’t you buy a small suite? Now there are many high-end properties.” She still smiled, noncommittal. Because from the bottom of her heart, she didn’t know how to answer. Thinking about such questions is exhausting. He said again: “You are a very special woman. You look very simple, but your simplicity is noble. You are very humble, but your modesty makes people difficult to approach.” Her face changed immediately, She didn’t like it when people judged her like that, not even as a compliment. But then she thought, maybe it wasn’t a compliment, not even a comment? What they said was right, it was nothing more than an objective description of her. So she smiled again, feeling closer because of mutual understanding. She clearly felt that this person was deliberately approaching her. It’s also very possible that that’s not the case at all, and that she herself is too vigilant. But in any case, for a woman like her who is used to wrapping her body and mind tightly, it is impossible for the story of encounter to happen.

Wan Shui stayed in Sanya until the Spring Festival was over. She actually thought, just stay like this, she doesn’t want to go back to her home in the north. The home is comfortable, but she’s just a comfortable orphan.

In the city where she grew up, she was an orphan!

eight

By the age of twenty-five, Wan Shui had never been in love. Mom said: “Son, you have to start a family. Your dad and I have no other relatives. But we two got married and gave birth to you, and the three of us have a family.” Mom said: “Mom and Dad are old, we Sooner or later it will go. We want to see your children, your home.”

Wan Shui was married off by his father when he was twenty-five years old. Twenty-five years old is a moderate age, just suitable for marriage. Like her, her husband is also a child of a big yard, so their living habits are easy to adapt to. The two of them knew each other before, but they had never been in contact with each other. None of them thought there was anything wrong with that. Especially for Wan Shui, the meaning of marriage is nothing more than sleeping in another bed. When her husband is away or has social engagements, she still returns to her mother to rest. Mom said: “It’s easier to have feelings when you are married and live together than to fall in love.” Mom is right, she and Dad are like that.

After she got married she still didn’t like to talk much. My husband is an active person. There are five brothers and sisters in his family. The elder sister and younger brother often come to their house to play cards, touch mahjong, chat, and make dumplings together. They have extended the extended family. But Wan Shui had never had such an experience, so he couldn’t get into it no matter what. She couldn’t talk, and she couldn’t play cards, so she hid in the kitchen to help her aunt cook and find some work to do. Several times, the siblings seemed to forget her, as if she was a guest of this family.

Wan Shui and her husband’s married life is not very harmonious, she always said it hurts. Intercourse between men and women should be joyful. But she was always in pain, which made him also have a psychological barrier. He quietly told his sister about it. My sister is a doctor, and the way doctors treat patients is always very straightforward. In their eyes, there is no overall concept of a person, just individual organs. When they came home again, my sister put this question on the dining table like a cold dish: “Shui’er, you should see a gynecologist. At your age, the married life should be very harmonious.” My sister is thirteen years old. He joined the army and prepared his skin in the operating room of a field hospital at the age of sixteen. What has he never seen before? What she said was nothing, but what Wan Shui heard was hard and hurtful. Wan Shui glanced at her husband, feeling ashamed. How can you tell others about this kind of thing. Moreover, even if my sister knew about it, shouldn’t she tell her in private? How can the couple’s sex life be disclosed in public?

Wan Shui refused to have sex with her husband anymore, and she didn’t even want him to touch her again. They were supposed to sleep under one quilt, but she made herself another quilt. The husband is really nice, he doesn’t force her. The two lived a good life, but avoided talking about it. Gradually, his brothers and sisters stopped coming to their house, and her husband often didn’t come back for dinner. He didn’t drink alcohol at first, but recently he often brought back the smell of alcohol. Auntie was in charge of cleaning their clothes, and Wan Shui was not a perceptive person, but she happened to see lipstick marks on her husband’s white shirt. Wan Shui never made noise, and kept it in her heart when she had something to do. She excused the two of them sleeping together to influence each other, and moved directly to the guest room. My husband is an open-minded person, and he speaks quickly about everything. But for a woman like Wan Shui who has no flaws, he has nothing to do. The lipstick was put on by his younger sister who was watching the cards on his shoulder. He hoped that Wan Shui would have a fight with him. But Wan Shui didn’t even want to quarrel. The two families are family friends, and the two parents get along very well, so there is no reason for divorce. In those days, no one would get divorced because of disharmony in their married life.

Wan Shui’s husband became as quiet as Wan Shui, and was no longer happy with his siblings. He was so thin that he couldn’t eat and couldn’t sleep all night. The young couple went to the hospital for a physical examination. He was fine and there was nothing wrong with him. But long-term insomnia is not a problem. My sister took my brother to the psychiatrist, and the doctor said he was suffering from severe depression. It wasn’t called depression at that time, it just meant that he had a mental problem. My sister said to Wan Shui: “How could it be? He is such a happy person.” She didn’t mean to blame Wan Shui, and even apologized a little. But after hearing this, Wan Shui felt that the responsibility was entirely on him, so he was even more confused.

If it wasn’t for her husband’s physical problems, Wan Shui would not have the consciousness of a “wife”. She loves a clean person so much, and now she doesn’t dislike a patient at all, and tries her best to fulfill the responsibility of a wife. She takes care of herself very well every day, and she also takes care of her husband very well. Following the doctor’s advice, he took his hand for a walk in the park every day. When he didn’t speak, Wan Shui deliberately found some topics to talk to him. She told him the story she had just read in the book. She was reading Marquez’s “Love in the Time of Cholera”, reading a chapter a day, and then telling him slowly. “Weak people can never enter the kingdom of love, because it is a harsh and mean country. Women will only bow down to men with strong will, because only such men can give them a sense of security to face the challenges of life. “She wants to have an affair with the hero and heroine of the book together with her husband. He held her hand tightly while listening to her story, and looked at his wife affectionately. She is demure, gentle, and she is at her most beautiful when she speaks. He becomes more and more dependent on her. His face was flushed, he ate a lot, and his regrowth was as thick as a meadow in May. But a new problem appeared. Wan Shui found that her husband liked to lock himself in the bathroom more and more. She waited for him to come out and check. There was a smell of fresh semen, which she had smelled on the first night of their wedding. Wan Shui blushed, and she moved her quilt back to their marriage bed, asking her husband to do that for the first time. But the husband was dying. No matter how hard they tried, he couldn’t get a normal erection once. He cried like a child, and said, “Shui’er, I’m sorry for you.” Wan Shui stared at him blankly, not knowing how to comfort him. But what was even more unexpected was that he was under too much mental stress, and soon discovered the second disease, reflux esophagitis.

At first, my mother was looking forward to Wan Shui’s quick birth of a child, but later she was afraid that she would give birth to a child. Could her son-in-law have that kind of mental illness?

The husband was later taken to the United States by his second sister, where he recovered very well. He is at both ends of the spectrum between the United States and his wife. He is reluctant to part with the United States, where he is resurrected as a complete man with full blood. He was also really reluctant to part with Wan Shui. She had been so patient with him after he had been ill for so long. Both he and his sister sincerely persuaded her to come over. Wan Shui refused, because she was reluctant to part with her parents.

Wan Shui’s husband met an enthusiastic American girl in the United States. After they were together for a month, the girl became pregnant. He told Wan Shui. Wan Shui was not sad, she was happy for him. Next, divorce is the proper meaning of the question, no matter who brings it up. Wan Shui directly signed the application form he sent. For her, divorce is a kind of redemption and a kind of relief.

Mom asked someone to introduce someone to Wan Shui, but she refused all the time, saying it was not suitable. Until she died, the mother felt that she couldn’t let go of her daughter. When the mother was about to leave, she held her daughter’s hand tightly and said, “Niuniu, you will become an orphan when mother leaves.” She felt that her mother was right. No matter how old she is, as long as she has no parents, she is an orphan.

Mom reluctantly closed her eyes.

Apart from his parents, Wan Shui’s heart is peaceful and generous. She neither loves nor hates anyone.

Nine

Wan Shui turned off WeChat and switched his phone to airplane mode. As long as she doesn’t look for others, no one will look for her. As for Zhang Youan, she didn’t want him to know about her going to Sanya. This is personal privacy, why let others know?

Zhang Youan in the United States is also drifting in a torrent designed by others. He didn’t resist, he just went down the river. The two sons really want their father to find a companion. They think that his father’s former colleague is good, cheerful, lively and happy. My colleague was called Zhao Minglan when she was in China, but she is called her Lan in the United States. The sons planned a travel plan for their father, and they asked Lan to be his father’s tour guide. Lan happily accepted. Lan has been abroad for almost twenty years, and her behavior is very American. As soon as she set off, she asked, “How about we book a room? This will save your son money.” She laughed. Zhang Youan also laughed, and said, “I can pay the fee myself.”

That day in Philadelphia, they probably booked a wrong hotel and only gave them a double room. Lan smiled and said: “This is the arrangement of fate, there is no way.” Zhang You’an didn’t say much, anyway, just do as the Romans do. People say that in the United States, it is normal for a man and a woman to live together, but it is not normal for two men to live together. He simply was normal once. After simply washing up, he lay down on his own bed early and fell asleep. In the middle of the night Leland crawled into his bed. Zhang Youan hugged her politely, but she refused to leave, so Zhang Youan had no choice but to get out of bed and sleep on another bed. He laughed at himself: “I’m old. In the past, I was powerless and unintentional, but now I am powerless!”

Lan said, “Ann, do you mind my affairs in China?”

“Domestic affairs?” Zhang You’an seemed surprised, “I don’t know what’s going on in your country. You know mine. You never like to listen to gossip.”

Lan said: “I went abroad because of an affair, and my husband divorced me. There was a lot of trouble at the time.”

Zhang You’an said: “Oh. No one has ever been young, it happened decades ago, why mention that!”

Lan sighed and said, “I’m an impulsive person, and I can’t help but indulge myself when I’m happy.” After speaking, she fell asleep quickly as if nothing had happened. She was probably too tired, and would occasionally snore slightly. Zhang Youan’s heart was pounding, if Lan came again, he might not be able to control it. The lower part of him stood stiffly. He and his wife had been at odds for half their lives, and he had forgotten the function of this place.

How could he not know about Lan’s past? She has strong professional ability, good popularity, enthusiasm and straightforwardness, but she makes mistakes repeatedly on the issue of style. She and her assistant went out to investigate, and they were as happy as husband and wife along the way, but when the inspection was over, she was determined not to continue. She is a married woman, as if this was only remembered after she came back. The assistant was still a young man who liked to drink and pestered her endlessly when he was drunk. Later, the unit transferred the assistant to another place. The husband forgave her. In the middle, she gave him a pair of twins, both sons and daughters. The husband is a good man, he never mentions the past, and treats her as always. The children went to elementary school, but she even got in touch with a forestry technician again. She always used work reasons to run up the hills, and they made love wildly under the big trees in the woodland. She took the initiative to tell her husband. She doesn’t want a divorce. In fact, the husband doesn’t want to leave either, they are very harmonious both emotionally and physically. But after all, this matter cannot be contained in paper, and the husband’s family cannot accept it. They feel that such things have happened twice, and it is too embarrassing to live on. The marriage was finally divorced, the son was given to her husband, and she took her daughter to the United States.

Woke up the next day, Lan acted like nothing happened. She is still simple and happy. He even teased him at breakfast: “An, the Chinese eat too little meat and don’t drink milk, so how can they have the ability to climb up and down?” He said, and put a few slices of bacon on Zhang Youan’s plate.

It was a pleasant trip, and with a woman like Lan, it was hard not to be ignited by her joy. The sons were looking forward to a result between the two, but Lan told them with a smile: “Your father is not good, he can’t satisfy me.” The two sons were also amused by her and laughed. They didn’t expect that their father didn’t mind at all, “What’s the matter? I couldn’t do it when your mother was alive, for many years!”

Zhang Youan’s camera saved many photos of him and Lan, sometimes she put her arms around him, sometimes she stood on tiptoe and kissed his face. This woman, whenever you are with her, you have to accept being hugged and kissed by her, which is more casual than shaking hands.

Zhang Youan became young in the United States. Lan is right, eating meat and milk is indeed more healthy than eating noodles and porridge. He wanted to tell Wan Shui what happened here, but he couldn’t get through her phone. He sent many photos to her mailbox, and wrote her long emails, telling Lan’s story, including the night he and Lan.

In the email, Zhang Youan told Wan Shui that most Americans do not wear masks. Lan and her daughter and son-in-law were both infected with the new crown, but they recovered soon. He didn’t, his body was strong. He advised Wan Shui that people must exercise more, bask in the sun, and accept the wind.

Zhang Youan proposed several times that he wanted to return to China. He misses his nursery, spring is coming, all kinds of seedlings are going to sprout, and he is worried that the workers he hires don’t know how to take care of them. He called the students to visit several times. They reassure him. Every time he consulted about the landing policy, he said that various isolation measures were in place in the country to ensure that no one was infected by outsiders, and he would have to be isolated for about 30 to 40 days when he came back. He thought, let alone forty days, even eighty days would not matter to him. He was just worried about Wan Shui’s cleanliness, and she probably wouldn’t see him within a year. He understands her, she is used to being alone, as if living in a vacuum. He felt genuine sympathy for her.

Zhang Youan was bored in his son’s house, and he tried to pick up the little English he had in school. Soon he was able to read English newspapers half-guessingly, and he could handle going out alone. He chose a scarf for Wan Shui in the mall, and at first he chose blue and white ones, thinking that Wan Shui’s skin was fair, and either one was suitable. Thinking about it, it suddenly changed to magenta. He felt that this woman needed color too much. He thought she would refuse to accept his gift, but he bought it first, after all, it was a wish. Passing by a bookstore, he went in to take a look, and an English version of Rachel Joyce’s novel “A Pilgrimage of a Man” attracted him. The book is thin, the paper is soft, and it is extremely comfortable to hold in the hand. One person walked more than 600 miles in 87 days. About the return of love, self-discovery, self-redemption, and the beauty of all things. From the moment the protagonist steps forward, his journey of more than 600 miles is another journey through the tunnel of time. He was attracted by the introduction and hadn’t read novels for many years. In the past he started reading English newspapers just to learn English.

Zhang You’an started to read this novel. He looked up the English dictionary while reading, and was deeply attracted by the stories in the book. Although his English was not bad in the past, after all, he hadn’t touched it for decades. At first, he could only read a few pages a day, but later his speed became faster. He was moved and couldn’t help but write to Wan Shui to share. Later, every time he read a paragraph, he would translate it into Chinese and tell her. Harold walked eighty-seven days, and he shared a month and a day. He suddenly decided to go back, so he booked a ticket online. Quarantining may be painful, but it’s harder than six hundred and twenty-seven miles.

Zhang You’an is going back to China, and he will leave as soon as he says, and he can’t wait for a day. The son is very strange. He is alone when he returns to China. Why is he in such a hurry?

The eldest daughter-in-law is a white American. She asked, “Ann, do you have a loved one in China? Is she waiting for you?”

Zhang Youan laughed and said, “I have a nursery, and there are tens of thousands of beloved trees waiting for me.”

Zhang Youan’s spoken English was difficult to understand, and his daughter-in-law asked, “How many lovers?”

The son laughed until tears came out: “Father’s lovers, tens of thousands, can fill a huge piece of land.”

ten

Wan Shui came back from Sanya, and she overcame numerous difficulties when she left, and she did the same when she came back. She got on the elevator at home, and the whole elevator was shaking. There is only one word on my mind, Orphan, Orphan, Orphan…

The elevator door opened, and she stepped out as if crossing a bridge, and saw two pots of shimmering glass crabapple standing at the door, the flowers were in full bloom. Open the door lock, my God! The pot of bougainvillea that she had forgotten was still blooming vigorously. There are plants with such vigorous vitality in this world? No wonder trees live for thousands of years. When she left, she put a bucket of water under the flowerpot, inserted a piece of rubber pipe wrapped in cotton thread into the flower soil, and put the other end of the pipe in the bucket. She was just trying to reassure the plant that it hadn’t been abandoned. Now there is only a little water left in the bucket, but the pipe is damp. Bougainvillea, what a clever bougainvillea! Does it have the ability to be reborn nine times?

For the first time, Wan Shui didn’t bother to disinfect herself, she turned on the computer with her hands covered in mud.

Harold, Queenie, and the almost neglected Harold’s wife Maureen.

He has worked in a winery for forty years in a trivial job. He has no ideals, no beliefs, and he cannot give his wife and son what they want. With no close people, no friends, it seems that he should live the rest of his life like this until the end of his life.

A man who lives bent over forever.

The deepest loneliness of a person is not being understood.

Queenie was just a former colleague of Harold’s, not a friend. Harold couldn’t understand, why did Queenie write to him? He didn’t even know how to write her back. She has cancer and she is dying.

alone – alone – alone –

Queenie was brave. She wrote a letter to him, a colleague who was still familiar with him in the past. Otherwise, she is a completely forgotten person in this world.

On the way to post a reply to Queenie, he suddenly decided, “I’m going to keep going and walk to see her!”

He had the first belief in his life: “As long as I walk down, Queenie will live.”

Walking was difficult, and with the pain in his body, he thought of some more painful pasts in his life:

When his mother left him, she was so resolute;

How lonely and helpless his alcoholic father brought women home for the night;

Every time his son fell ill, he watched helplessly, and he never thought of giving him a hug or a word of comfort;

After the son passed away, the wife lived in the guest room. He didn’t try to keep her, didn’t make even a little emotional repair.

One person, eighty-seven days, six hundred and twenty-seven miles away, is destined to be a lonely journey. But it was this loneliness that allowed him to experience transformation and realize self-salvation.

Ten years after Wan Shui’s father passed away, her mother also left her due to multiple organ failure. Her world has been lonely to despair since then, and she doesn’t trust anyone, let alone love. She thought of death countless times, but she was unwilling to live. She is jealous of other people’s happiness. People in the whole world are happier than her. When her mother just passed away, people kept introducing her to someone. There is a leading cadre with very good conditions, who is widowed. The man had a crush on her. Who doesn’t like her? A clean and serene woman of good family and a full university education. They dated for a while, walked together, ate together. The man had invited her to his house for the weekend. The home is large, gorgeous, warm and comfortable, and the sun shines in every corner. The family uses a clean and neat aunt. The only daughter has an enviable job in the capital, and her husband and children are decent.

All is well. She accepted it without any resistance. Several times, the man hugged her, and she submissively let him touch her body. Pleasantly, warmly. Wan Shui had a feeling of being cherished like a family member, but she didn’t express her feelings to him, she was just not good at it. Twice, the men wanted to keep her at home overnight. He looked eagerly, childlike into her eyes. “Stay, we’re together.”

She hesitated and said, “We, just wait, we’ll be ready.” She smiled with girlish shyness.

She was ready, she liked this man who was like a brother. She doesn’t have an elder brother, and her elder brother is probably like him.

Everything is going well, and everything seems to be in order.

Start in spring. The summer was coming to an end, that person invited her to a western restaurant she liked for dinner. She went and deliberately wore the floral dress he liked, beautiful, young, intellectual, and elegant.

The man who was already very familiar still looked at her with admiring eyes. He ordered a steak well done for her, medium rare for himself. After finishing the steak, ask the waiter to remove the plate and replace it with hot coffee. Her habit, coffee and tea must be hot. Although he didn’t talk much, the communication was pleasant. He always treated her like that, with some care and love. She is used to this warmth.

The man suddenly said: “Xiao Shui, I feel very good for you. But I can’t be too selfish.”

Wan Shui smiled softly and said, “No, you are not selfish, you are much better than me.”

The man said: “Wan Shui, I always feel that you are not completely satisfied with me, at least you are hesitant.”

Wan Shui was taken aback for a moment, then smiled and said, “I’m not doing well enough, please forgive me.” She even looked at him coquettishly. I’m still satisfied, it’s been a long time since I got the satisfaction of being loved and cared for. He was six or seven years older than her, and she was only in her forties. But Wan Shui didn’t say that.

The man said: “Xiao Shui, someone introduced me to another woman. She took the initiative. We met twice. Xiao Shui, you should know me a little bit. I’m not a playful person. She is very active.” , she took the initiative to ask me out twice. I just want to ask for your opinion. ”

“Ask for my opinion?” Wan Shui was like a thousand arrows piercing her heart, she grabbed the table hard to prevent him from seeing anything, “She must be better than me in every aspect.” After she finished speaking, she felt that she had slipped a bit. , she pinched herself hard.

“No, she is not the same as you, she is just an ordinary woman. Her man died in a car accident, and she lived with a daughter who was a few years older than you. But she…”

Wan Shui didn’t hear what he was saying, she was glad she didn’t fall off the cliff. “Sorry, I’m going to the bathroom.”

Wan Shui hugged the toilet in the bathroom and vomited up everything he ate at noon, everything. When she came out, she looked in the mirror and couldn’t see anything unusual.

The man said, “Xiao Shui, are you okay?”

Wan Shui still had her usual smile: “It’s okay.”

The man said: “Xiao Shui, even if you love me a little in your heart, you will not be so indifferent. You really make me hate. Why don’t you cry? Why don’t you scold me? Do I have no weight in your heart?” The man Tears came out.

Wan Shui said, “Bless you!”

She refused the man to take her home and said goodbye to him kindly. When she got home and closed the door, she cried heartbreakingly, just like when her mother died.

She was once again abandoned by her loved ones!

In the evening, the man called her, and he asked her, “Can I go to your place to see you?”

Wan Shui said, “No. I’m fine by myself.”

The man said: “My mobile phone is not turned off, you can call me anytime.”

Wan Shui never hit a single one.

eleven

It was a fine morning, full of spring. Zhang You’an received a call from Wan Shui early in the morning, and she said to him, “Can you send me a location? I want to visit your nursery.”

Zhang Youan said, “Are you sure I don’t need to pick you up?”

Wan Shui said, “I’m sure!”

Wan Shui dug out all the clothes in the closet, every one was old, and every one couldn’t match this spring. But she didn’t care too much, and over the old shirts and drawers, she put on a whitishly washed blue canvas dress, which she wore when she first got married. He wore a wide-brimmed gray hat and half-height rubber shoes.

An hour later, she was taken to Zhang Youan’s cabin by taxi.

Zhang You’an looked at her and jokingly said, “If you hadn’t called in advance, I would have thought Charlotte’s Jane Eyre had come back from time travel.”

Wan Shui said: “There is no way, I only have these old clothes, I am an old person.” She closed her eyes and lowered her head to sniff the pumpkin flowers crawling on the fence of the wooden house, and said mischievously: “The sun is new every day. .Flowers are new every day. Only people are old…”

Before she could finish speaking, a wave of body heat passed behind her. She opened her eyes suddenly, and a warm magenta scarf was added around her neck. Tears welled up in her eyes, and she said, “Don’t make me cry anymore, I cried all night last night.”

Zhang You’an said, “I’m sorry, I’m sorry! Miss Jian, hurry up and take a look inside the house.”

The cabin is filled with rich rosin. Seeing the doubt in Wan Shui’s eyes, he explained: “The logs are imported from Finland. After ordering, they will send workers to assemble them.”

Wan Shui looked inside and out, lowered his head and sniffed the bedding on the bed, and said, “It was just changed.”

Zhang Youan smiled happily, and said: “You are the first female VIP received by this hut. When I received your call, I quickly changed and tidied up, not because I was afraid of being disgusted by you! It’s just that you can’t use disinfectant spray on this log. Otherwise The house loses the smell of wood.”

Wan Shui picked up a glass of boiled water on the table, neither cold nor hot, the temperature was just right. She drank it down in one gulp. Zhang You’an said: “It’s the first time I met a lady like this, she didn’t make any sound when she drank water.”

Wan Shui said, “There are still many things you haven’t seen!”

Zhang You’an said, “Don’t you dislike my cup? You don’t even ask if it has been sterilized.”

Wan Shui said, “I’ve seen it before, there is a disinfection cabinet in the kitchen, and there isn’t even a fingerprint on the cup.”

“Oh. And my hands, do I need to disinfect them?”

“I saw it. There are alcohol swabs on the bar at the door.”

“Can you visit my nursery?” He gestured please.

She scratched her head and made a embarrassed expression. “To tell you the truth, I haven’t taken a shower since I got off the plane last night. Can you lend me your bathroom?”

Zhang You’an said with a smile: “Water has its water, and a tiller has its field. I’ll go to work in the field first. This room belongs to you alone.”

Wan Shui took a soaking bath. This Zhang You’an is really a careful person, and the towels and slippers are all disposable. She cleaned herself up in the bedroom, still putting on her shirt and trousers.

Chang hasn’t come back yet, a true gentleman, and he leaves her plenty of time. But sleepiness hit her, and she didn’t close her eyes for more than 20 hours. She lay down on the bed and got into the bed. As soon as she fell asleep, she said to herself, “It’s incredible!”

When she opened her eyes again, the world was completely dark and she couldn’t see anything. There are no lights on the banks of the Yellow River, and the night is completely dark. She said loudly, “Is there anyone, where am I?”

The lights outside flicked on, and someone said, “I’m in the living room!”

She put on her coat and went out: “What’s wrong with me? Passed out because of drunk oxygen?”

Zhang You’an said: “Miss Jian, you didn’t pass out, but fell asleep. You slept for more than ten hours at a stretch, and you fell asleep all over the world.”

“God, you should wake me up! If I keep sleeping like this, you will keep waiting?”

“That goes without saying!” He pointed to the table next to him, “I cooked egg gumbo, and the leaves in it were green vegetables from the garden, can you eat some with confidence?”

“God, I’m starving to death, I’ll take the poison if you give me it.”

“There is the poison. I regret that there is no medicine.” He said as he went to serve her food.

He watched her eat a small bowl of rice mixed with large and small rice, and drank a large bowl of thick vegetable soup. Then let her wash the dishes, carefully put them in the disinfection cabinet and arrange them.

He said, “Should I go or shall I send you away?”

She didn’t answer, but asked, “Your cabin is such a nice place to sleep. Will you sell it to me?”

He chuckled, “It can be sold, but you have to buy it with someone.”

Then he straightened his face and said, “Will you be afraid if I leave alone?”

She said, “Of course!”

He walked up to her and said with a smirk, “I’ll accompany you, aren’t you more afraid?”

She smiled and thumped him: “What am I afraid of? You sleep in the same room with a few women and you can sit still. I have nothing to be afraid of.”

Zhang You’an took her hand and turned on the light in the bedroom, and made a gesture of invitation. Wan Shui also blinked his eyes and made a scary face. She froze at the door of her bedroom, whose wooden walls were covered with seasonal fashion clothes, hats and scarves. On the cabinet in front of the bed were short cream boots. Brand new, restrained and fresh colour.

She murmured, “God! Just now you saw me praying to the pumpkin flower, did it conjure it up for me?”

“That’s not true! How can I be so capable without pumpkin flowers? Look, the pumpkin flowers have appeared.” He opened the drawer of the wardrobe, and there were a change of underwear and pajamas inside. He said, “You have been sleeping, so I had no choice but to wash and dry it for you.” He opened his hands, looking very passive.

They lie down under a quilt. A man and a woman.

Men don’t sit still. The woman felt no pain either. Outside the house is the yellow land, and walking along the land is the endlessly rushing Yellow River.

Wan Shui asked at their happiest moment: “I’m not an orphan anymore?!”

Her tone was clearly determined, and she had already given the answer.

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