She sat sulking for a while, but this kind of problem couldn’t really be solved by intelligent or emotional control— it required skills.
She was truly at a loss.
Even after a long time, Lin Lan didn’t get much results and even managed to prick herself a couple of times more.
With that, she gave up momentarily and decided to go to their plot of land and pick up a few vegetables.
She had to stock up on cabbage, radishes and potatoes for the winter.
Her five children have already felt the pressure from the worry of not collecting enough grain and vegetables.
She went home at noon and the children came back one after another, so she hurriedly put everything away and prepared to cook.
Erwang chased Sanwang around, Mai Sui led Xiaowang, Xiaowang ushered Wangwang and the two ducks, but Dawang was nowhere to be seen.
Xiaowang ran in happily, “Mother, I managed to play this,” He held up his flute and began to blow.
Lin Lan’s eyes lit up, “Xiaowang is really amazing!”
Erwang said, “We went to mow the grass and met the principal, who cut a reed(1) for us.
Then we just attached it.”
(T/N: A reed is a thin piece of wood that is needed to play certain wind instruments like the clarinet, saxophone, oboe etc..
A flute doesn’t need a reed to function, but there is a type of flute that requires it called the ney.
For simplicity’s sake, the flute in this story will be the ney.)
When Lin Lan thought about it, she realized that she was really negligent.
The Supply and Marketing cooperative didn’t sell flute reeds when she bought it.
Instead, she didn’t ponder too much about it back then and just bought the instrument home to coax her children.
Who would have thought that Xiaowang was a natural, being able to blow the flute even though he didn’t receive any guidance It wasn’t an easy thing to do.
Maisui entered the room and saw the quilt on the kang as she said happily, “Mother, can I have a quilt by myself”
Maisui was the only daughter in the family.
Besides, she wouldn’t be able to share a quilt with the other children once she got older.
Hence, she would definitely need her own quilt.
Her brothers did not have this treatment.
She said she was going to open it and give the quilt a try as Lin Lan quickly pressed, “Don’t disturb me, it’s not finished yet.
Let me cook first.”
Erwang could see through the expressions on Lin Lan’s face and he whispered, “Mother, you can ask my eldest aunt to help.”
“Your eldest aunt still has to go to work and she still has a lot of people at home to serve.
How is it possible”
Erwang showed a playful smile.
Lin Lan looked at him, sigh, you cunning brat, what do you know
“I’m going to start cooking, let’s see how many eggs I have saved.
I will make scrambled eggs with persimmons at noon.”
“Mother, I think we can make scrambled eggs with leeks and use the persimmons for soup,” Sanwang ran in, sweating on his forehead, making the crescent-shaped scars particularly conspicuous.
If the scars were a little darker, he probably could pass for a little Bao Gong(2).
(T/N: An ancient figure who is honored as the cultural symbol of justice in Chinese society.
This figure is known to have a crescent moon on the middle of his forehead, which is what led Lin Lan to say he could be a child version of Bao Gong)
Lin Lan felt guilty, “Okay, let’s make scrambled eggs with chives that Sanwang likes to eat.”
There were three hens in the family, so there was no shortage of eggs.
However, there was a lack of oil.
While cooking, the children were scrambling to fiddle with the radio.
The sound became even more distorted as time went by, before the radio ran out of battery and turned off.
Erwang blamed Maisui, “Did you sneak it out again to show off”
Maisui’s cheeks flushed but she refused to admit it, “Nonsense, I was out mowing the grass all day.
When do I have the time to take it out”
Sanwang took a tomato and gnawed at it, his face splattered with juice, “Second sister(3), didn’t you take the radio and listen to it with Yurong, Manman and the others”