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Growing Up.

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Block B Tracy Xu Growing Up The opening bus door let out a breath of odors. The smell of sweat and humidity instantly filled Mrs. Tao's nostrils. She sat down uncomfortably in the bus. The man-made leather stuck onto her skin like a hot rubber glove. If wasn't for Johnny, I wouldn't have to waste 50� on the bus fare. If it weren't for what I had wasted on Johnny before, I wouldn't even have to be here in the first place. Car horns went off like a bunch of loose trumpets. It was the typical afternoon traffic jam. The bus stopped within an ocean of cars. Mrs. Tao could barely hear those girls talking across from her. "Ugh, it's so stuffy in here, let's get a smoke after okay?" "Yeah, sure. I have some in my bag, got it from my bro. I'm sure he won't notice it." "Isn't your bro in jail right now?" "He was, came out last Sunday...oh you bauyee!" "What!! Ken is a yan dao you know..." The rusty old engine of the bus cranked up again, creeping slowly among other impatient cars. The loud noise again drowned out the voices of those girls. Don't they know what's good for them? And look at their skirts. Wouldn't it just be a lot easier if they just wore their underwear? ...read more.


"Come in." A man's voice replied. The door cracked open and a small yet clean room came into view. In the middle of it sat an ordinary looking man. The desk in front of him matched with other furniture in the room. On top of it was a neatly arranged stack of paper and files. The man sat looking as if he had been waiting for her for a long time. The brightness of the light reflected off a shiny spot on his head. A ragged brown suit fitted him perfectly in size and personality. One word to describe this man. Dull. "Hi, is Dr. Wu here?" "I am Dr. Wu," the man said extending a rough looking hand. For a second, Mrs. Tao saw a flicker of warmth in his eyes. "Hi there, and you must be Mrs. Tao." "Yes...sorry if I am late, there was a little traffic problem and..." "No no, you are not late at all. I always prepare myself for the next patient onward." Patient...how she hated that word. "So Mrs. Tao, I have learned that you think your son is experiencing some hard changes in life, and you want some help. Is that so?" "Oh, yes. My son Johnny is studying in USA right now. I sent him there to study about half a year ago. Since then, through the letters he sent me, I have noticed some great changes." ...read more.


"M, I'll only write to you once every month now...bye...J" Mrs. Tao was no longer in control of her tear ducts. Tears ran her cheek like two strings of water beads. "And this it the letter I received two days ago from him." She said through sobs and sniffs. "May 31, 00. Hi, need more money. My marks are still OK. Hey, is it possible for me to stay here for two years instead of one? J" "Dr. Wu, my son Johnny was very close to me. We had a relationship that was seldom found between a mother and her son. But from the letters he sent me in the past few months. I don't know what's happening. He isn't the Johnny I used to know. Please doctor. You are a psychiatrist, you should be able to help." Dr. Wu handed Mrs. Tao a tissue to dry her eyes. He thought for a few moments, and when he faced her again, surprisingly there was a smile on his face. "What is it doctor?" "Ahem...from my years of experience, my assumption is that there is nothing wrong with your son Johnny, he is a perfectly fine kid." Mrs. Tao let out a sigh of relief. But her body tensed again as she made out the words "Then...what is happening to him?" Looking up slowly from the letter, the doctor replied. "Johnny is just, growing up." Bauyee - Singaporean slang for girls desperate for a boyfriend Yan dao - Singaporean slang for handsome boy Ciao - commonly used in Singapore for crazy woman ...read more.

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