Jenn

Arriving at the place, I offered Jenn to come out of the car and take in the view.

We unhurriedly strolled on the cement piers, surrounded by an iron fence. Fishermen cast fishing rods into the water. Near them, on newspapers or plastic bags, were pieces of cut-up fish and crabs with hacked-up shells. They used these as bait.

A little kid about five years old wearing a red coat strayed from his mother and squatted down, studying freshly caught herring in the most attentive manner. The fish jumped up on the concrete and its mug was quickly overflowing with blood from its hook-damaged mouth.

“It’s breathing! It’s opening its gills!” said the child in amazement, touching the fish with his little finger.

“When you grow up, will you also become a fisherman? Or a sea captain?” Jenn asked sweetly, bending down to the kid.

“Miss, you’re bothering me,” the kid replied in a serious tone. “Don’t you see that I am busy with the fish?”

“Wha-at?!” Jenn dragged out and laughed.

All of a sudden, I was overwhelmed by the desire to stand like this someday on the piers—restless sea gulls soaring over the water, the clouds flying, and liners coming to and leaving from the port—with my son sitting nearby on his heels studying a fat herring, touching its open gills and its bloody mouth, watching how it struggles on the concrete while flashing its scales.

I vividly saw this picture for a moment as my future, including my son, and Jenn, and myself with them.

“Aah!” Jenn exclaimed, jerking her hand up.

She was staring at the railing, where a gust of wind had blown her little red hat off her head.

The hat was swaying on the waves, slightly pushed towards the shore, but it was getting a heavy soaking in the water.

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