Grandma lifted the lantern and drew closer to me when I got to the kitchen to see whether supper was ready. From my toes, I was wet to the waist, and that perhaps made her curious. 

“Is the brook flooded?” she asked, as she pulled the wick. The lampshade shone brightly. The bright light was accompanied by the scent of the burning wick that was soaked with kerosene. “You shouldn’t have taken the shorter route to the community center,” she added. 

“Yes, it’s flooded. The wooden bridge has been carried away by the torrent.”

I moved two steps away from Grandma after answering her, but before I could reach where the basket of fish stood beside the mud hearth, she asked: “How were you two able to cross the flooded stream?”

I wasn’t moved that much by Grandma's second question right away. I thought it was just one of the overly caring attitudes of the aged that was on display. But upon a

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