Of Happy Times

You wake up with the yellow curtains fluttering a few inches above your face. Yellow isn’t your favorite color, but you don’t change it as it makes the room bright, even on the cloudiest day. Also, it has calla lily prints all over, a type of flower you know nothing about.

Sweat powders your neck and back, but you still make a coffee for your late breakfast. Ten isn’t the wake-up time for hardworking people, but you are on vacation anyway—a first after a year on the island. Now you’re on a bigger land—a massive one, crowded, noisy.

The humidity unsettles you, much more the storm and the non-stop rain. So you don’t sleep until the early morning. Instead, you listen to the raindrops on the roof and the clapping of the thunder. You stay alert and wait for the sirens, but you won’t be able to fight the rainy lullaby. In the morning, you thank heavens there’s no flood.

You walk to the bridge and see the relentless overflowing chocolate river. Nobody could cross the bridge. You all stand and take pictures and videos of what looked like a spectacle instead of an impending calamity.
The backhoes are visible on the other side of the bridge. They aren’t operational at the moment, but they have been since you can remember.

Visiting the bridge on a stormy day.

Decades ago, when everyone’s asleep in this quiet, quaint neighborhood, you hear that mechanical noise. Like that sound from your father’s jeep when it’s running, but it is faint. It comes from afar, from the other end of the bridge, where clear water used to run. Cool during summer, warm on rainy days.

You went there once on a rainy day. The neighborhood kids invited you to bathe in the river, and you join them because you thought it was fun. You came home and saw your mother’s angry face, and she beat you until you said you wouldn’t do it anymore. But, you were just a kid, and the river was still of happy times.

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