Dad’s funeral

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  • Published 20140423
  • ISBN: 9781922182258
  • Extent: 264 pp
  • Paperback (234 x 153mm), eBook

‘CAN I MAKE it?’ a scary thought crosses my mind as the plane climbs away from Sydney into the night’s sky. ‘Your dad is not very well,’ Mum’s voice echoes in my head. She has never said that before and there is something in her voice that is measured and yet unsettling. ‘Are you coming back for work soon?’ she asks over the phone. ‘No, but I’ll be back as soon as I can,’ I assure her.

As a conscientious woman, Mum has tried to shoulder most of the burden Dad’s condition has inflicted on her family. On a July evening in 2000, in the coal-rich city of Taiyuan that overlooks the Yellow River, Dad was attacked by a stroke. It was past midnight when he was rushed into the operating theatre. Mum told First Sister not to call me or Second Sister. ‘Don’t wake them now. There’s nothing they can do from Beijing. Wait until morning.’

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