Far Afield

Calla Dai, guest writer

Outside, the sky is gloomy. Inside, people stand around a coffin, I stand in the front of them. This is my best friend– Wragge’s funeral. He died in a tornado on April 24. It was the seventh-deadliest in American history and struck the towns of Amite, Louisiana; Pine, Louisiana; and Purvis, Mississippi, killing 143 and injuring 770 (History.com Staff. “Tornado). Three days after the tornado happened, his corpse is finally back here, and he will be buried today. Finally, I say a “good night” to him. When I say farewell to my best friend, I say a ” good night” instead a ” goodbye” because I want to pray that he can have a good rest in the heaven.

Now it is April, 27, 1908, 5:35 a.m. I lost my best friend forever.

My name is Lugest, and I’m a twenty-eight-year old man. Before I was 12 years old, I lived with my parents in Japan, when Japan was in Past-Meiji Restoration Era. Japan encouraged adoption of American machines. My parents had a machine company and developed well in Japan. However, my grandmother had liver cancer when I was 12 years old. My family immigrated to Oklahoma to taking care of my grandmother. Then I made friend with Wragge.

After the funeral, when I was on my way to work, the sky suddenly started to drizzle, just like my feelings. I am remind that after I graduated from university, I worked in my father’s company. My life was incompetent because I was not interested in machines and I didn’t know what I wanted to do. I lost my passion for life. Wragge was totally different from me; he loved traveling and always was full of enthusiasm about life. He didn’t have a stable job and bank savings. He only worked when he didn’t have money to travel and resigned again when he thought he had enough money to travel for a while. He always brought interesting stuff to me, such as music instruments, toys, and food, that he got from his trip and told me his experiences.

When I asked:” Don’t you think your life is toilsome?”

He always smiled and answered me:” I feel so happy. When a person knows what he lives for, he can stand any kind of situation.”

Actually, I admire that he can have diverse wonderful experiences.  Sometimes I even wanted to go with him but I didn’t have enough courage to do it and I won’t have chance anymore.

When I just arrived at my office, I saw a letter from Vladimir, who is my friend in Japan, and he is also my best friend. Since I immigrated to America, we still contact by mail. In the letter he said:”

Dear Lugest,

            In the last letter, I told you that my family wanted to immigrate to America. Recently, we tried so hard to promote it, but we still failed. The American government reduced the Japanese immigrations this February because of the gentleman agreement of 1907.

            We haven’t seen you  for sixteen years and I miss you so much. I feel so morose that I can’t go to America, but maybe you can come to visit me?

            Best wishes.



I am so disappointed after I reading the letter. Wragge ‘s death shocked me; I don’t know which will come first: the accident or tomorrow? I don’t know how many chances I will have to meet my friends. I want to visit him so much, but I have work to do.


Time goes by so fast; it’s May now. My mother heard that people will celebrate the first Mother’s Day in Andrew’s Methodist Church today–May 10th. So she is wondering if I will give her a surprise. Soafter work, I bought some carnationsas gift for her. When I get to her house, my mother has already prepared dinner for me.

“I made your favorite food–mash potatoes!” She tells me in her sweet voice.

“I got flowers for you. Happy Mother’s Day, mom.” I give her the flowers and kiss her.

“Thanks, my dear!” She looks so happy and smiles just like a young lady.

During the dinner,my mother told me her experience traveling through New York with my father. In the beginning of this year, she went to New York with my father to celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary. They saw the gold ball drop in the Times Square and lots of amazing things.

” I think my life became more worthy because I had more wonderful experiences. You should also try to travel around when you are still young, ” she said.

“I know, mom. To be honest, I want to visit Vladimir because Wragge’s death made me feel that I need to cherish my friends when I still have chance to see them. But I have work to do so I don’t know how to make a decision,” I said.

” My son, you know what? I know you are not interested in machines at all and you don’t feel happy in these years because you don’t like your job. So why not choose to do the things that you want?  Why not Go to gain different experiences? Maybe you can find something you really like. Don’t let your hesitance make you feel regretful in the future,” my mother told me.

On my way to home, I finally decide to resign at end of this year and go to Japan and somewhere else that I heard from Wragge.


In the blink of an eye, autumn arrives, along with bad news. Today is September 17th, and my uncle Thomas Selfridge became the first person to die in an airplane crash.The pilot, Orville Wright, is severely injured in the crash but recovers. His death make me fear flying in an airplane. I feel so hesitant in my heart, on the one hand, yet I promised my friends that I will go to Japan. On the other hand, I don’t want to take the airplane. I am conflicted.


Ten days later, I read exciting news in the newspaper,while I was eating breakfast. Henry Ford produces his first Model T automobile.It is generally regarded as the first affordable automobile and the car that opened travel to the common middle-class American (History.com Staff. Model). I love driving I had a lots of experiences driving for business trips. I had even driven from Oklahoma to Los Angeles. So when I read this news, I had a novel idea in my mind. I decided to buy a Model T and drive to New York International Harbor and take a ship to Japan. On the way, I can travel around America. However, my car is too old to drive such long distances, so it should be a good choice to buy a Model T because it is comfortable to drive and affordable.

It is a beautiful day with bright sunshine today. I start my trip after I say goodbye to my parents. It’s December 31st today. It’s the final day of a year, and a fresh start to another year. It’s a day that symbolically ends my old life and starts my new life… In our life there is not only compromise at present but also poetry and far afield.


Works Cited

History.com Staff. “Model T.” History.com. A+E Networks, 2010. Web. 5 Apr. 2017.

History.com Staff. “Tornado Flattens Towns in Louisiana And”Mississippi.” History.com. A+E Networks, 2000. Web. 5 Apr. 2017.



Gorman, Robert F. The 20th Century 1901-1940. Hackensack: Salem, 2007. Print.

History.com Staff. “Gentleman’s Agreement.”History.com. A+E Networks,2009. Web. 27 Mar.                2017.

History.com Staff. “Model T.”History.com. A+E Networks, 2010. Web. 27Mar. 2017.