Become a Fan
Coming home chapter 2
By Pam L Potter
Monday, July 22, 2002
Later that night, Sammy sits on the settee behind her bed biting her
fingernails, her son sits on her lap, as her daughter jumps on the
behind her. By midnight her children slept, as she sobs sat in her
lonely bed, clutch his pillow to her breast, bites her nails,
Where is he? I give anything to take back what I said! I'm so
stupid. I didn't mean it. Pingya, please come back. Pingya I love
you, I can't lose you, where are you? Please Gods send Pingya back
home to me and our babies. Please God.
She stumbles out of bed. She walks across her room to the small
window, and she peeks threw the curtains watching the heavy rain hit
the window pane, and jerks of lighting and thunder across the cattle
field beyond the horse stables.
" Please Gods don't let Pingya drown, and please let him be inside
She prays out loud wringing her hands too together standing at the
By two in the morning she had fantasy of ringing his neck for
leaving her. She paces back and forth at the door, He left me to
take care of our babies alone! To endlessly wonder into another
dirty small stupid town. Oh, no! He'll find himself another woman to
keep him warm! That's my place, and Pingya you better not get
yourself another woman! You got me, and you don't need anyone else.
By dawn as the rooster crows in the distance, she cries, stares a
hole through the door biting her fingernails to bleed, but she
The next afternoon, Anderson clans are eating lunch, Pingya waltzes
into the kitchen like he had only been gone a few minutes, instead
of one whole evening. As soon as his daughter seen him, she scoots
off her grandmother's lap. He picks her up, walks to his wife as she
sat at the table, with their son in her arms, feeding him peas with
a fork. She looks up at the man she loves, believing she had lost
him forever, not knowing what to say. He hands his daughter to his
" Samantha, I wished to talk to you alone."
She hands her son to her sister, who sat next to her. She left with
him. They sat on the back porch steps.
" I stay with Quentin and Hallie last night"
Sammy sighed at the nightmare he was with a saloon girl faded from
" Please forgive me Pingya, I'll go get our babies ready, we can
leave today. I love you more than anything or anyone."
He smiles, clutches her hands kissing them.
" Quentin told me, Lester has a farm, and he needs someone to
sharecrop. The farm belonged to Lester's uncle who died. Lester too
busies, helping his father at the saloon. He needs someone to
sharecrop right now or they shall lose the farm to the bank. I shall
try for one year to be a farmer, If I do not like, we leave
She nods yes.
" Pingya, you don't have to do this? What about your livery stable
in New Mexico?"
" Samantha Jo, I have already signed the legal paper's at Simon
Bailey's office. The farm is half ours for one year. I understand
your desire to live near your family. I reread our letter from my
family in China, How happy they were knowing I have family. I
remembered we were excited seeing the photographs of them and their
families. We sent them
our family photographs."
" The livery stable can wait."
" How about a livery stable in Circleville when Pearl has her colt?"
" I have all ready check Circleville does not need another livery
stable but the Taylor family does need our help."
She nods yes.
" If we lived in China, you would wish us too lived near my family I
know this to be true . I shall try to stay a year. Not to worry or
feel guilty, be happy."
She threw her arms around his neck hugging and kissing his lips.
Then she jumps up running back into the house slamming the back
door. She gathers up her children telling her family that Pingya
just sharecrop Taylor's farm. He was going to take her now to see
the farm that they are back as soon as they could. Anderson's clan
follows her shaking their heads no. Pete helps hitch up the covered
wagon grinning to himself as Sammy rambles about their farm she
hasn't seen yet like she had. Anderson family watches, Kelly family
leaves the stables in their cover wagon watching until they were out
of sight. Anderson family goes back into the kitchen sitting down at
the table eating their lunch, now is cold. Misses Anderson sigh,
" Josh, one good thing you can honestly say about Pingya. He must
really love Sammy. He's proven that today, sharecropping old man
Taylor's farm just so he could keep her near us. He could have run
out on her so easy last night. When he didn't come back, I thought
Misses Anderson sips quietly on her bitter cold black coffee. He
The next day is hectic for Kelly's clan getting settled into your
own place wasn't as easy as they both thought it would be. The house
is in bad repaired. Pingya had on top of his list to fix, was the
cast iron stove clogged pipe.
After breakfast of oatmeal cooked over the open fireplace in the
parlor, Sammy stood on top of a chipped dark green painted
foot stool, a broom handle shoved up the hole in the ceiling where
the stove pipe had been. Pingya orders her to push the broom handle
up and down through the deep dark round hole. Suddenly she's
coughing and spitting, and leaps off the three-legged stool tossing
the broom on the floor as she jumps on the floor. Dust and dirt, and
snoot fell out of the hole in the ceiling all over her yellow calico
dress and auburn hair and the wood floor around her. Pingya jerks
out his head the same time out of the stove oven underneath the
pipe's connection, as the dust and snoot fell through, coughing and
spitting cursing loudly in Chinese. Sammy fear Pingya's was choking
to death she hits him as hard as she could on his back.
" Not to worry, I fine. Do not hit me!"
He moans shoving her hands away from his back. She notices she had
greasy black snoot all over his face, and his long queue hanging
down his back touching his belt loops of his levi's with a hole in
his left knee. Their two toddlers' stops playing with their wooden
block, Joshua scratched the wood block wood under to the table,
gaping at their parent's.
Pingya pumps water onto the dish rag, rubbing a sliver of soap into
rag. He washes his wife's face as she slumps down onto the stool
tiredly. Then he washes his eyes.
" Do not stop, Samantha Jo! Do it! We shall unclog it. Fumiko,
Joshua goes and plays."
The toddler's obeys, whining to their selves quietly. Sammy nods,
climbing back upon the chair. She held the broom upside down. Pingya
slowly peeks inside the cook stove leaving his head out.
He nods yes. She pushes the broom handle up and down through the
hole in the log beam ceiling, Soon sprinkles of dust fell into her
eyes she drops the broom jumping off the stool, wiping her eyes. He
wets a rag at the hot reservoir at the side of stove. She tilts her
head backwards as he blows into her open eyes, until she pushes her
In no time he had her upon the stool poking the broom handle up and
down through the hole in the ceiling. Finally he is satisfied they
had it clean. Pingya reconnected the stove pipe. Sammy sweeps the
dusty floor, trying to keep her toddler's from hanging on her trying
to push the broom for her, until their father scolds them, and they
ran into the parlor as Joshua chants, Boo-Who and cries and Fumiko
cries clutching onto their wooden blocks.
Soon she had the kitchen clean up. She goes to cook stove, tossed
several cow chips from a milk bucket next to the stove into fire
underneath her burner's next to the oven door. She pumps water into
a big cast iron pot. She dripped water on her floor as she heaves
the full heavy pot on top of her stove. She wonders around the big
room, biting her nails, Wonder what on Pingya lists next? He guards
it like it secret papers from the enemy. And I 'm the enemy! He
going to make me pay for staying in Circleville. A stove couldn't,
been as dirty as that? I bet he got up in the night while I was
sleeping and shoved
dirt up in it! But how? We clean out the pipe in Kansas City and it
wasn't that bad. And the stove looked like it was there since
eighteen hundred and thirty! I saw that calenders he hiding, marking
off the days until he free from this farm and we go to New Mexico.
Why he thinks it so great there? I remember Misty told me she was
there one winter when she was little and it was colder and deeper
snow that she ever saw in Missouri. But it was pretty, she said all
the mountains. I
wonder what Misty doing? I should write her and tells she we're
finally in Circleville. I'll do that after my bath. No I should get
a postcard photograph of us and sent her. Joshua was still a baby
last she saw of him. We need to send Aunt Nancy Jane one, then Adda,
then Amy, and of course Ma would want one, and Aunt Meg, and I want
one. I have three
pages left in my blue velvet photograph album. Well I can make up my
own to list.
She jumps as she heard the water boiling over her pot on the stove.
She carefully pours the steaming water into her big round wooden
wash tub. She disrobes, and the water still was too hot, she pumps a
bucket full of cold water and then pour in her bath. She tested the
water with her hand, grinning as she slips into the tub. She laid
her head back and closed her eyes thinking about the new photograph
she was going to take, what dress should Fumiko wear?
Meanwhile as she soaks in the tub planning, Pingya came in from the
back porch whistling Skip to the Lou my darling,with Smokey and
Spunky at his heels. He grins as he glanced and no children to be
seen, he rolled up his sleeve to his elbow dipping his hands into
the tub water. He finds the wet soapy rag, then rubs her back
slowly. She jumps back and opens her eyes.
" Oh, it's just you."
" Whom were you expecting?"
Smokey meowed as she looks at her empty clay water bowl. Neither
Sammy nor Pingya noticed.
" Nobody, rub it again, but around my aching neck."
He grins, slowly rubbing her spine, and shoulder.
" No. My neck."
She jumped and covered herself with her arms as their two children
ran in from the parlor.
" Pa, I help!"
" Fumiko and Joshua go play."
" Pa . . . "
Spunky ran to Joshua licking his sticky hands. Pingya points to the
door not noticed his son hands, only thinking about Sammy in the tub
" Chiuh!" [Go.]
They ran from the room screaming as their hearts were broken. As
Pingya rubs her her neck with the wet soapy rag.
" Pingya I was thinking, it's been awhile since we had a
" Samantha, you just had one three months ago. We have not change?"
" We haven't, but the children have."
" Need more important things."
" More important than photographs of your children?"
He dropped the rag in the tub and stood up. He rolled his sleeves
down passed his elbows.
" Yes, have you seen a plow in our barn?"
" Exactly. We need a plow, the photographs will have to wait. "
" What happens to the plow? Mister Taylor plows, this farm for
" Lester said there was, a few items sold at his death to paid a few
Sammy picked up the soapy rag and rung it out and washed her nose
and mouth and forehead.
" Not to worry Cletus bought the plow, I just buy it back."
Smokey jumped from the window pane where she had been washing
herself. She ran passed Pingya to the back door and meow. Pingya
without thinking walked over and let her out. He turned to Sammy as
she steps out of the tub, not noticing.
" I am going to town and buy the plow right now before someone else
With what? You said we don't even have the money to get a family
photograph! She thought as she hurried into their bedroom wrapping a
quilt over her body as he left from the back door. She watched him
from the bedroom room window rode Pearl out of the barn.
Several hours later as Sammy came down from the ladder Pingya came
in from the porch.
" Pingya, I been worried, you been gone for three hours!"
He sat at the table, and took off his hat.
After a long pause.
" Pingya I was going to make a pot of tea."
" I better get to bed, I have to ride to Soldier in the morning to
see if there is a plow there, if not have to order a new one."
Sammy wanted to asked if she and the children could go? She hasn't
been to Soldier since the play three years ago. But decided it was
better to wait to be asked in the mood he was in.
Several hours later, she opened her eyes and yawn as he turns on the
coil oil lamp, looking on the dresser.
" What are you looking for?"
" My pocket watches. I laid it up last night."
" It's not even daylight. Your watch is in the top drawer, I was
worried Fumiko get it again."
" Yes, she had a chair, standing on it. She had your watch up to her
ear as Joshua was crying and climbing up on the chair to play with
it too. Then Fumiko pushed him off the church and ran jumped off the
chair and started out the door with your watch."
" Is there no place to put something, to keep the children from
" That why I hid in the top drawer, under your long johns."
He found his watch and wound it, then slipped in his shirt pocket.
" Go back to sleep, I go now. Be back late tonight."
" You can't go without breakfast."
Sammy hurried out of bed and into dimly lit the kitchen from a
candle on the table.
" I already ate, fixed two eggs and bacon and coffee. Did not want
to wake you."
She looked at the dirty plate, coffee cup, on the table, the greasy
black skillet on the stove, You didn't want me to have time to get
ready and wake the children and ask if we could go? Don't be so
noble, I see right threw that. Why you wake me at all? She thought,
as he hurried out the door. She blew out the candle on the table and
went back to bed.