From the reduction of a store I originally owned to the need to do business on a small cart, everything is very unstable, and I drift wherever there are crowds. The hard work for day after day is just for being able to return to the original stable life, to pursue my father's last wish, and to have a safe haven with my family and health is enough.
「 臭豆腐、肉羹麵線、豆花。」 我開著這台小攤車在一條又一條的巷弄裡穿梭、拼命叫賣著。
"Stinky tofu, vermicelli with pork-meat stew, bean curd." I drove this small cart through one alley after another, hawking desperately. Thirty years ago, I took over this business from my father. The small store in Shenkeng was my father's lifelong painstaking effort. Before he died,
I promised him that I would continue to manage it well. The business has not been very good. After all, there are too many competitors around us, and we are not particularly famous, but the income can at least support our family. Until the outbreak of the epidemic three years ago, it was a big blow to businesses like us whose customers were 70% foreigners.
From the original surplus of income to the complete balance of expenses, it was still passable at first, but what happened to me was that my mother and wife got sick one after another. That year, our son was going to college, and the tuition fees, treatment fees, food expenses, etc. weighed me down. At that time, I made a decision to sell the store, paid everything and used the rest of the money to buy a van and build it into an action stinky tofu truck.
There are fixed days every week that my son and I will set up a stall together and stop along the route we planned. At the beginning, not many people would come to buy, and we couldn’t make much money, and even lost money. Because the docking point is always on the side of the road, or the entrance and exit of the night market, I thought it was temporary, so I didn’t apply for it. Once I was caught by the police. I begged him hard when he billed, but it was useless. It is true that I did something wrong, and I lost a sum of money in this way.
After a long time, I got acquainted with and established a good relationship with some residents in the frequented areas. When my loud voice sounded, they would come to order food with me and exchange a few words with me with their own pots. I once met a mother who saw my son working hard to help. She was moved and had a more in-depth chat with me. I talked about the process of inheriting the family business from the beginning to the small stall car I drive now. Maybe it was dark and I couldn't see clearly, but her tears seemed to be rolling in her eyes. Three days later, I drove to this community to sell again, and I saw this mother again. She said cheers to me and handed me a pack of envelopes at the checkout. I refused straight away. No matter how miserable my life is, I don't want to accept financial assistance from others for no reason. It may take a while, but I believe that I will always get through it. I simply accepted her encouragement and kindness, hoping in my heart that I could improve step by step.
Now the income is still not much, and I don’t dare to ask extravagantly, as long as I can feed my whole family three meals a day, that’s enough. Although my son also started to work part-time to earn some money to relieve my burden, recently I have been thinking whether I should find another part-time job? I wanted to buy my dad's shop back, which was his greatest asset in his life, but I sold it because of the difficulties I encountered. From the moment I sold it, I have always had a sense of guilt in my heart. Even if I think so, it seems that it is still difficult to implement.
I have to take care of my bedridden mother and wife, and I have to work every day. If I want to find another part-time job, this kind of life really makes me have no skills...