Where Is My Sister?
Where Is My Sister Author Joseph A. Burke
In Asian countries, the poverty effects up to 95% of the population.
Unemployment is more than 40% and can be as much as 70%. This is about a family that the father works and get an equivalent of $70 per month. That is a whole $10 more than most workers make, if they are working. The weather is always between 70 F and 92 F. It is a little cooler during the rainy season when it rains for hours. During some other months it rains but only for a 1/2 hour to an hour.
The family consists of a father, a mother and they have a daughter Tika age 7 and Mina, age 10. The girls go to school 6 days a week between 9 and 1 PM. They are good girls and easy to teach all the principles that life requires for growing into a wonderful woman that will be well prepared for when it is time to be married, which is between age 25 and age 29.
On this particular day, all had been going just like any other day, Mother always begins the morning preparing what will be needed all day for cooking food and of course boiling water. No one has a refrigerator as it cost too much for the electricity. So they have very little meat and if they can afford a chicken or a couple of fish once in awhile, it was a treat. She always boiled the water for 15 to 20 minutes but for the past few days the rain very seldom stopped during the day and the wood was wet.
But just in case, she always kept the water on for at least 30 minutes as it did not seam to get hot enough. But with it boiling for that length of time and no one had gotten sick before. The two girls were at school when the father came home not feeling too good. The mother was having some funny feelings too. Her stomach felt a little upset but it did not prevent her from continuing her daily duties.
When he stepped inside the door she asks "Honey, why are you home so early?"
He responded, "My stomach does not feel good at all and i feel weak." Hes made his way to the couch and laid down. His wife continued to work but her stomach was also not doing so well and she felt weaker as the hour went on.
After another hour the husband wakes up and can almost not speak and says, "I think I need to see a doctor."
She responds, "Okay, I will go with you. Here let me help you up."
They make their way very slowly about 2 blocks where they can get a bus to take them to the hospital, about 2 mile away. The bus is a Volkswagen bus with the large door open and a bench seat down each side of the bus. It only cost 50,000 rupiah to go anywhere across town for that cost and 50,000 rupiah (about $0.60) About 30 minutes later they are at the hospital and they make their way into the reception area. The wife is so weak now that she cannot answer any questions as to who they are and where they live and if they have family that could be notified.
They get checked in and they nurses do all the preliminary things they do and the doctor comes into the room where the father is first. He comes to a conclusion that it is from not boiling water long enough. If all goes right and they have come in soon enough, all will be okay but they are real sick at this moment in time.
Then he goes to the wife's bed and finds the same symptoms. She has passed out and they hook up the ivies and give her some anti-biotics. Both of them are given the required medicine, Ivies in the wrists and asleep. Every little bit they check them. Four hours later and they have not improved any.
After 8 hours, both of them die and neither had regained consciousness. No names, no address, not knowing who they are or where they are from, the hospital staff cannot do any more.
While this was going on, the girls were at school. They arrived home about 1 hour after their mom and dad had left the house. There is no note and they looked around and found their cell phone. They noticed the fire under the water pail and the water was boiling very good. So they could not call them. So they changed from the school uniforms into their play clothes. After being home for about 15 minutes they decide to take the water off of the fire so it would not all evaporate. Then they both left the house and found friends there own age to play with.
Mina noticed the time was about 5 PM so she went and found her sister and they decided they better get home as mom and dad are wonder where they are. They would have seen the school clothes and know they were home from school but unless they came looking they would not know where they are.
They arrive at the house and call out "Mother, Father, are you here?" with no response. They call out again as they enter the house, "Mother, Father, where are you?" and no response. They wait an hour and still no mother or father. So Mina gets some rice and water and begins to make something to eat. After eating they did not speak much as they cleaned up the eating area and washed the dishes. Tika was the first to speak for a long time of silence.
"Mina, where do you think mommy and daddy are? I am scared."
Mina responds "Tika, do not be scared for they should be home very shortly. Maybe they went to the market to get tomorrows food."
There is no TV and no Radio for they did not have enough money in the family to purchase them. The girls had made a couple of toys out of some things they found laying on the ground. Many neighbors in the neighborhood would just through their trash out at a corner of their property corner but there were not trash trucks that ever came by. At times someone would light it on fire and it would burn most of it. But their mom and dad always took care of their trash and their house was good and clean.
Mina was also very worried and scared but she did not want to let her younger sister know it or see it. After 8 PM Mina got Tika and they closed the house up and went to bed. They only had one bed and it was a mattress on the floor but it felt good to lay down. But it was so quiet and Mina heard Tika crying for awhile very low in tone and then she must have gone to sleep. Mina has so many thoughts of terrible things that could have happened to mom and dad. She finally succumbed to crying her heart out. She tried to keep the sound as low as could be to not wake Tika up. Finally she went to sleep.
Tika wakes up after the sun was shining and climbs over Mina and goes to the toilet. She walks by mom and dad's room and neither were sleeping in their bed. Dad should have gotten up so maybe they are in the eating area which is part of the kitchen area. So after using the toilet she went to the kitchen and no one was there. She immediately began to cry and ran as fast as she could to Mina.
"Mina, Mina ..... mom and dad are still not here ..." as the sobs kept coming. "Where could they be?"
"Tika, I understand. Something must have happened to them. After breakfast we go and talk to the neighbors and see if they know where they went."
"Okay, Mina, lets go eat" as they begin walking to the kitchen. Tika's tears has stopped and she ate her breakfast real fast so she could get her clothes on and go find mom and dad.
After they finished eating Mina reminded Tika that doing dishes first and then they would go look. As soon as they finished the dishes they began going from door to door asking about their mother and father. Each stop was the same ..... "I am sorry, no, we have not seen them, how long have they been gone?"
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