Tomorrow is another day

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
This story is about the every day struggle of migrant workers in China.

Submitted: August 20, 2007

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Submitted: August 20, 2007

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It's my 136th day in the city. It has been 136 days since I left Xia Fou Tou. I still can remember my parents saying "There is no future for you in this village. If you want to be better off, you have to find your luck somewhere else."
The person above me is such a snorer. Xia Beige didn't snore that way. Wish he would still be there, but after jamming his hand between metal plates he wasn't able to work anymore.
He must be back in his hometown now. Will he ever find another job with his unusable hand? They couldn't help him in the hospital, as he didn't have enough money. The doctor explained to him, that he has to pay in cash, if he doesn't have health insurance. Health insurance? I heard that urban citizens have something like that. I never had it. Will I ever have it?
The section leader comes in. "Everybody get up" he shouts. 30 minutes later I'm already sitting in the bus. It's about 20 minutes drive to the south of Beijing. When I arrived in this city, all those fancy high-rise buildings really fascinated me, but now it doesn't mean anything to me anymore. I really miss the quiet and peaceful country life. It's only 67 more days until Spring Festival. Will my parents slaughter a goose? I didn't have goose for a long time.
Finally we arrive at the construction side. I hate the way business men look at us, when we step out of the bus. I can see by their eyes, that they don't have any respect for us. In their eyes, I am not as much human as they are, I guess. Is it because I don't have such elegant suites or such a fancy car? Is it because I didn't finish high school? When we have lunch outside at the street and college girls pass by, they don't even look at me. In my village I used to be someone. If I smile at a girl from the city, their look back tells me that they feel disgusted.
The building shell is almost done. I think the work can be finished before December. It's time for lunch now. It's not as good as in my hometown, but at least it fills me up.
In the afternoon Chen from Dacitan fell off the scaffold. He is the second guy to whom this happened in the last 3 months. This poor guy just arrived from his hometown 3 weeks ago. He was a little bit clumsy, but we appreciated his good humour. His comedy performances in the evenings, were one of the rare highlights during our days. He had a wife and a son in Dacitan. Who will take care of them now? The hearse arrives and brings him away. We are allowed to hold a little ceremony for Chen. Some of his close friends cry quietly, but most of the guys are rooted to the spot and look aggrieved to the ground.
The construction supervisor stops the ceremony.
It's four more hours until dinner. Another shift will replace us later. The building has to be finished soon. Other construction sites are waiting in the future. Tomorrow is another day.


© Copyright 2020 Clemens. All rights reserved.

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