Age of glory

  In my childhood, my cousin was the only opposite sex I had more contact with. I mean, young opposite sex.
  There are three sisters in our family. The old courtyard is like a “daughter country.” The arrival of my cousin has added a kind of chaos and disturbance to the old courtyard with a strong scent. I remember that my cousin at that time was ten years old. He was born beautiful and fair-skinned, tall and thin, like a vigorous little tree.
  At that time, my cousin was a frequent visitor to the old courtyard. He is clean, gentle, and has such a gentle and bookish air. Of course, thinking about it now, my cousin did not read much after all. After graduating from junior high school, he went to the army for many years. But how should I put it, the bookishness on my cousin distinguishes him from the other boys in the village. This makes him both eye-catching and lonely in Fangcun.
  Also, my cousin can sing “Shajiabang”. When people are tired from work, they will make him sing. He stood in the middle of the crowd and cleared his throat. As soon as he sang, people calmed down. The cousin may not sing very well, but he is no one beside him. People were suffocated by his expression. In the countryside, who has seen such a calm child? Until later, every time my grandma talked about this, she always sighed and said that this child has had an adjutant appearance since he was a child.
  Cousin is the son of auntie. In those years, he often came to my house. My mother always changed tricks to make food for him. My mother likes him, and once wanted to ask him to be her son. In my memory, when my mother was beamingly busy in the kitchen, in all likelihood, my cousin came.
  For my cousin, my memory is vague and messy. I only went to elementary school when my cousin left as a soldier. This time, the mountains are high and the rivers are long. Meeting again is a matter of years later.
  One day when I came home from school, I walked in and saw a young man sitting in the house. Seeing me, he quickly stood up and said with a smile: “Little Haruko–” My heart was pounding. I didn’t know what to do, so I just listened to my mother yelling from the side: “Call me brother!”-It’s a watch brother! I looked at my cousin, he was standing there, smiling, more upright and more delicate, but the outline of his face was clear, the chin was green, and he had already begun to shave. I stood, speechless for a long while. My mother nodded to my forehead and smiled softly: “This kid–” My cousin also smiled, and said, “Haruko, he grows so tall.” I suddenly turned around, opened the curtain and ran away. Get out. It is spring, when the sun is shining down, lazy, soft and bright. There is also wind. I watched the young leaves of the trees rippling slightly in the wind, and I felt an inexplicable melancholy.
two

  The cousin has seen the world. When eating, he was already very calm. Compared to when I sang “Shajiabang” back then, it is more mature and respectful.
  He talked to my mother about the army, his career change, the new unit in the small town, and his future. My mother listened carefully and smiled. Obviously, there were some things she didn’t understand. However, she still listened hard, her eyes filled with pride.
  When my cousin talked about the future, there was a kind of light in his eyes, which was self-confidence and longing. He just returned from the army, everything is fresh. In different environments, different rules, different people and things, in this small town in his hometown, he is determined to give it a full play.
  At that time, he was not married yet. In those days, the threshold of the family was almost broken by the matchmaker. The aunt is very anxious. The cousin is careless, as if this matter has nothing to do with him. Later I learned that my cousin had a crush on someone. You must not guess that that person is our sister-in-law next door.
  For this cousin’s love, I still don’t know why. Yusao is a handsome little wife. At that time, we were separated from Yusao’s house by a wall, and my cousin was often called by Yusao to help her stretch the washed wet clothes, help her carry water from the well, and help her blast the chicken into the fence.
  Many years later, when my cousin returned to the small city from the army, when Qingyun went straight up, Yusao would still sigh with her mother, this child is different, the rules.
  I don’t know if my cousin has been thinking about Yusao for so many years. In short, the cousin has always stayed out of the enthusiasm for the family. Auntie was helpless and asked my mother to persuade him. My cousin listened to what my mother said. Soon, he began a long blind date. At that time, our topic always revolved around the marriage of our cousin. Cousin is very picky, he is really picky in the egg. For this, Wei has offended many people.
  At that time, my cousin had already worked hard in the small city. The pride in his career further highlights his loneliness in love. People sighed that it is hard to reach completion in the world. But suddenly one day, my cousin brought a girl. That girl later became my cousin.
  That day was a weekend. I was lying on the table doing my homework. There was a motorcycle noise in the yard, and my cousin brought the girl. While eating, my cousin kept talking to my parents. He didn’t even sit with that girl.
  He was sitting next to my mother, but me, next to the girl. I smelled a faint scent, which was unique to that girl. My mother kept picking her vegetables, and the girl blushed and humbly. The cousin was holding the wine cup, he didn’t say a word to the push on the dinner table, just chatting with my father. I suddenly felt a choking in my throat.
  For the first time in my life, I felt a kind of heartbreak. I mean, that time, the cousin and the girl, their appearance was a blow to me, a teenage girl. Later, I often remembered that year at noon that autumn day, when the sun was clear, I stood in the yard, sad for losing my cousin.
three

  However, two years later, at the wedding of my cousin, I was quite calm.
  At that time, I was already in middle school. In school, in books, I learned a lot. When I grow up, with the secrets that a girl should have, I will inexplicably daze, sigh, like fantasy and adventure, but hide these little ambitions in my heart so that no one can see it. On that day, at the cousin’s wedding, there were noisy crowds everywhere. Cousin and cousin—I have to call her cousin, they are standing in the crowd, smiling. The bride smiles particularly brightly; the bridegroom is much more reserved. He was wearing a snow-white shirt and a red bow tie. That was so handsome.
  Cousin often comes to Fangcun. Go to the old courtyard to see grandma, and then come to my house to see my mother. Sometimes, especially during the New Year, the cousin will bring his cousin. That time, it was Chinese New Year. In the first month, my cousin and cousin came to my house. My mother was talking with Yusao in the yard, and she was very happy to see her cousin coming and greeted them to come in. The cousin stood still.
  The winter sun shone pale and weak, like a forced smile. Mother took the cousin’s hand and talked very affectionately. At that time, my cousin was pregnant and Yusao had already given birth to two children. She and her cousin discussed some details enthusiastically, and after speaking, they laughed, the kind of hearty smile that women have. The cousin stood there, stunned for a moment.

  At that time, he was already a mature man, steady, calm, and possessing some authority, and he could be considered a good man in a small city. Marry a wife, have children, and live well. There may be illusions occasionally, however, it passed quickly. There was a crackling of firecrackers in the street, very crisp. My cousin came back to his senses. Just about to say something, I heard my mother say: “Go in, it’s so cold outside!” That day, I remember my cousin was very silent.
  In grandma’s house, in the old courtyard, the cousin has always been everyone’s pride, he is even a symbol of the city and power. Years later, my cousin has firmly rooted in the city. His daughter is already in elementary school. She is a clever and smart little princess in the old courtyard. Interesting stories about her are widely circulated among relatives. At that time, my cousin was already a little blessed, with a magnificent beer belly bulging under the leather jacket. He began to thank him slightly, as calm as ever, with more complacency and calmness. He is a guest in the old courtyard. My father, my uncle, and even my grandfather were all by the side, with a sense of sincerity and fear.
  At this time, my cousin often calls me over, asks me to sit next to him and ask me about things in school. There are some unwritten rules in Fangcun. For example, women are not allowed to banquets, especially girls. I am different. At that time, I had gone to university in the city and returned to Fangcun, naturally enjoying a different treatment. Moreover, as everyone knows, since I was young, my cousin has always favored me. I sat next to my cousin, but suddenly became silent. I know that I feel the grudge of sex. Of course, there is also an inexplicable sense of strangeness.
four

  After graduating from university, I worked in the city and returned to Fangcun less and less frequently. The same cousin hasn’t seen each other for several years. Occasionally, I heard something about my cousin from my mother. His cousin has always been well-versed in his official career. Like many men with brilliant careers, he has scandals from time to time in that small closed city. His cousin quarreled with him, shed tears, quarreled, and even threatened him, but to no avail.
  About cousin and cousin, everything between them, I don’t know much. Only once, my cousin suddenly called and talked to me about the daily routine. While speaking, she was talking about her cousin, and she suddenly burst into tears. I don’t know what to do for a while. At that time, we said a lot of things, most of them have been forgotten, only one sentence, I still remember: “Your brother-he has changed -” When my cousin said this, I could feel the tone in her tone Sad and helpless.
  I was stunned. The gentle boy many years ago walked slowly from the depths of the years, his face blurred. Is that cousin?
  That year, my mother died. Cousin came back from the city overnight. Regardless of people’s persuasion, he knelt down in front of his mother’s spirit, crying, like a child who had been wronged. My tears are streaming down. The past is vivid.
  There is a saying in Fangcun: The two aunts are not relatives; if the aunts die, their roots are cut off. After the death of his mother, his cousin rarely came to Fangcun. Of course, he also came to see his grandma in the old courtyard, but he came and went in a hurry every time.
  During the Mid-Autumn Festival the year my mother died, my cousin came to visit my father. As soon as he entered the yard, his cousin choked up. Did he think of his mother? Things are wrong. Cousin and father, the two men sat in the room, searching for topics with difficulty. More, it is a long silence.
  From the provincial capital to the capital, I moved all the way, getting farther and farther away from Fangcun and the old courtyard. During that time, I experienced many things, there were tribulations and hardships, and my heart gradually became rough and hard. I haven’t seen my cousin for five or six years, and occasionally heard some things about him, saying that he was down because of some problem. I don’t know what the cousin and cousin are doing now, how are they doing? They are still-loving, right? I always wanted to call, but I don’t know why, every time I pick up the phone, I put it down. I don’t know where to start. Later, there was nothing left.
  Sometimes, I think of my cousin, of how he looked when he was eleven or twelve. He was wearing blue shorts, black plastic sandals, carrying a can of small fish, and walking on the low wall. Suddenly, he jumped, startled me. He smiled.
  I feel sadly that something has quietly passed by. The surging time has taken so much, so much, that it is dare not to go into the details. Really, I dare not go into it.