The Hot Summer

The cicadas were too loud. The sky was bright and blue. The white cloud looked like a sofuto crimu (cold ice cream).  It was a typical hot summer morning in the August.

I felt numb. I closed my eyes and tried dozing off. I didn’t sleep well last night, and my eyes were puffy. I was too exhausted to find rest. I gave up taking a nap and opened my eyes. I saw outside from the car window a tiny oba-chan (old lady) was plowing her field through the shimmering heat waves from the road. I saw kids riding bikes. Many cars and people crossed the busy intersections. Life seemed normal, but not my family. “Today is a bonodori festival day; I wish I could go to the festival with my friends,” I thought.

But I knew I couldn’t. Even if I could go to the festival, I would not enjoy it anyway … Today was a very difficult day for my family. Our driver was driving our car slowly and carefully so that many cars behind us could follow our car. We were riding a special car, a hearse. My mother, my brother, and I were on the way to the funeral home to bury my father. I was just fifteen years old, and it was a very humid summer day.

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