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2．The Brothers of Black Smiths
(2.1)The Old Brothers of Black Smiths|
About 20 meters away from the eastward of our shop, there was a narrow lane named Garden Lane led to Dongshan Hill. On the both sides of the rocky-step entrance there were 2 wooden houses. They all belong to my parents. One was for residence, the other used to be workshop where were equipped with some incense-fabrication facilities, such as grinding wheel, grinding trough, working desks, etc.
On the west side of the lane entrance, separated by our courtyard wall, there was a forging shop run by Oldest He, the elder brother among 3 black smiths. His younger brother, the second He was working across the main street of Liberation. His youngest brother, The third He was in his next door.
Although those 3 brothers shared the same parents, they had totally different appearances and characters. They run their own business individually with rare communication, except for traveling to Guang Zhou when they jointly purchased raw materials, such as coke, iron ingots, etc.
Ever since my childhood, I could only have seen the oldest He, with a brass smoking pipe on hand, had been crouching and coughing all day long. I never found he had ever touched the forging hammer.
(2.2) The Forger’s Second Generation
Actually, the forging process was carrying out by his three sons. One was shaking a large hammer, the other using small one and the third pulling and pushing bellows. 3 young men’s hard work made the oldest He’s business in full swing and the jingling hammering was cheerfully sounding day and night.
When I was a little boy, I always sat in front of them to observe the forging process carefully.
It had been said the person holding small hammer actually played the role of team-leader.
Sure enough, I had noticed he conducted the whole process with his hammer. When he held the hammer and pointed to upward, the bellows immediately became silent. The big hammer holder also laid down his tool and hastily took a towel around his neck to wipe out the sweat. In the mean time, with his pinchers fumbling in stove, the team leader clipped a red and shining iron piece out. As his small hammer hit the piece, the bellows was joyfully sounded again. And the big hammer instantly dropped down with numerous shining sparks splashing to all directions. As 2 hammers hitting in turn, 2 brothers were alternatively shaking their arms and bending themselves just like puppets’ mechanical movement.
After a while, the small hammer hit the anvil and generated a dull sound. Accordingly, the large hammer was stopped in half way.
It meant the piece got cool and needed to re-heat again.
The team leader sent the cooled piece to stove and covered with burning coal. Then, he picked up another hot piece and jointly hit it again.
In this way, 3 brothers cooperated harmonically just like a symphony playing a vivid iron-and-steel concerto.
In 1958, the youngest brother, the bellows operator, was recruited.
After his departure, his mother missed him so much as if she were mad.
At that time, wiring broadcasting service was just put in trial run. A female announcer started broadcasting in mandarin.” Gan Yue Broadcasting Station, it is signing on now. ” The mother was sorely yearning towards her son. When she heard a strange sound coming from somewhere and misunderstood as a calling from her dear son’s army, “Gan Yue blacksmith’s attention, it is signing on now.” She was so excited that she took a chair and sat in front of her door and listened to it attentively. However, she heard nothing but continuous music playing. Waiting and waiting, she stilly sat there until mid night. When the trial run had completed and the calling sign had appealed again: ”Gan Yue Broadcasting Station, it is signing off now.” She was puzzled entirely and kept mumbling:” My dear son hasn’t come yet, why should it be signed off now?”
(2.4) Miserable Pleasure
As mentioned before, forging shops needed to collectively purchase raw material from time to time. This was the only opportunity for old brothers to gather together. Usually, they were tightly controlled by their wives and had no way to enjoy themselves thoroughly. With the agitation of extra male hormone and to compensate for their dissatisfaction and displeasure at home, they thirstily went to a red-light district and had their fling in Guang Zhou.
Unfortunately, just like a saying: extreme joy always begets sorrow. Their primitive sexual activities with no protection caused a miserable result.
Besides all necessary raw materials and luscious tropic fruits, they also brought back some thrilling sexual deceases. The youngest brother even suffered from terrible leprosy. His face was full of large and small dark red tumors and his forehead left no single piece of eyebrow. This awful look always made me sick and caused horrible night mare even by a remote glance.
(To be continued by P3 <A Thrifty Artist>)
My English Blog: http://wenzili.my.24en.com
[ Last edited by wenzili at 2006-7-31 01:59 PM ]