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Thhuk Pand Te

There was never enough for cab fare so we walked within the small radius of our lives, mum & I. What would decades on; be diagnosed as arthritis first conceived itself as a stretching pain in the back of my knees. I hated walking. Flapping my heels against my butt, I’d slow down, as mum dragged me on and often to sweeten my slog, en route temples or doctors, she’d buy me a large frosted cup of crushed orange ice, knowing already it was surefire laryngitis for my cords, knowing already she was over-budget yet instead of letting me into the gloom of deficit, she’d sugar our stride with mmms and aaahs as I fed her tiny tastes, cold syrup saffroning her tongue with which she’d lick her thumb, count money over and over, hunched at the edge of the bed, darkening the minus symbol at the tally point of her slow calculations. Those nights when she VapoRubbed my neck, massaged warm coconut oil behind my knees I’d mime, taxi, next time and she’d say …