Willful son who has fond memories of life with his mother when he was young, joins his mother, who now owns a back-country mine on a trip to the mine to help her run the business. She gives him certain responsibilities and that leads to an ultimatum when she countermands an order he has given to the workers. She owns the mine, she says, and she can give any orders she wants. He demands that she leave the running of the mine to him or he will leave.
His father sides with his mother and the son leaves her all alone in that back-country mine. On the way to meet her husband, sitting in the cab of a dump truck during the beginning of the rainy season, she, a 71-year-old woman, is thrown out of the overturned truck on a backwoods road and dies.
Her son feels guilt for her death. He had left her alone when she needed him.
Comment: This is one of those stories in which the drama is of lesser importance than the description of the process of mining procedures and the culture of the people. As a result, one does not share the son’s emotions on the death of his mother. The incidental information is more interesting to the reader than the dramatic conflict between the son and the mother. RayS.
Rating: *** out of *****.
About the Author: “Born in 1944 in Thailand, Trirat :Petchsingh writes: ‘I was educated in a number of countries; my greatest influence being five years spent in England as a boy, and eight ears in Australia where I studied for a degree.’ His stories to date are about Thais living in Thailand. Mr. Pechsingh is a correspondent for a news service but writing short stories has become one of his main interests. His first collection of stories was published last year.”
Short Story International #54. Ed. Sylvia Tankel. February 1986. Pp.116 -129.