Dreamworld, Gold Coast.
I was about 4 years old then. Young, naive, curious. I tugged at my dad’s shirt: “Daddy, I need to use the toilet!”. My old man smiled and held my hand, guiding me to the central washroom. I picked the cubicle, he chose the urinal. The toilet had 2 entrances. He took the exit we came from, the one on the right, and waited outside for me. Stupid me, I chose the left.
Stepping out, I couldn’t help noticing the smiles all around me. There were clowns, park guides, I even caught a glimpse of Bugs Bunny. Exciting. Yet I couldn’t find one particular smile, the one of my dad. I was frantic. I went mad. Crying was an understatement, I was bawling my eyes out. Little me, running around for 5 mins shouting: “Daddy! Daddy! Where are you!”. I started visualising the stories of scary kidnappers my mom used to tell me about back at home. Hands chopped off, dirty clothes, kneeling and begging day and night. Worse still, no more cookies and cream ice cream for the rest of my life.
Those 5 minutes were the longest 5 minutes of my life. It was hell. I couldn’t find Daddy anywhere. Yet, till this day, I still remember the face of the park guide that found me. Brown hair, thick Aussie accent. He had the most sparkly green eyes. “Hey kid, don’t worry I’ll help you find your parents! See this tag? I work for Dream world! I’ll bring you to the information office, let’s go kid!”. I was scared. I knew I had to trust this man, I had no other choice. “Thank you, uncle…”
My mom came rushing into the office first. She ran over and hugged me so tightly. She was crying too. Then came my dad. The look of relief on his face was indescribable. We stood there embracing, never letting each other go. As a young kid, that was all that mattered. Being together again with my family. My life was complete again.
I was about 4 years old then. Young, naive, curious.
“I Think I Am In Friend-Love With You” written by and illustrated by Yumi Sakugawa, published in Sadie Magazine, 2012.
This is the best thing ever.
Reblog ‘cause I know a couple people I’d love to send this to (but am way too afraid they would unfriend me/unfollow me and/or weird them out), and because of Murakami’s 1Q84.