Bang! Crash! Boom! Splash! I had a great future ahead of myself, but if only I knew, what awaited me. It was 1849, and I was boarding a paradise from the looks of it. My few personal possessions sloshed around the unpromising looking ship. My name is Xiao, and here I tell you my story.
I examined my very simple, plain bed to-be. It was squished together with another dirty-looking bunk. Then my brother Ming came barging in. “Xiao! Quick, get you are bags, let us a go! The ship is a leave!”
And in doing so, my fog mask fell from my unzipped luggage full of going-off food and gold-digging tools. Not that I knew, that long ten years ago. I couldn’t even speak proper English.
9 sickly months later…
I had just woken up from my not-so long disturbed nap, when I heard a loud groan from the front of the ship’s moaning hull. I jumped into my day clothes and rushed to the nearest glass window peered outside. What I saw surprised me as much as a clean pot of gold.
Land! At last, we had hit hard. Other multi-cultural miners to-be came out and chattered excitedly in their weird languages. My own brother came out, dazed but okay. “We land! Bro there, are yeah okay?”
“Yes. But what where we are?” I exclaimed. “I wander-“
I was interrupted by a loud announcement. “MINERS, YOUR LAND IS HERE. GIT OFF ME SHIP NOW, OTHERWISE YOU’LL MISS ALL YA’ GOLD.”
At that last word, everyone screamed and ran for their belongings and bags, while me and Ming just watched in disbelief, as we saw that our ‘land of gold’ was barren with rocks, sand and little trees and vegetation.
We took our possessions and got off the ship anyway, as the gang plank was higher-ed and disappeared. The first thing I noticed about the barren land was that it was peppered with…gold specks. I suppose everyone else saw what I saw, and they unpacked their mining tools and tents at lightning speed. Ming and I decided to just stay away from everyone, and found a spot with shade and vegetation. We set up camp in less than ten minutes, and rapidly started collecting all the alluvial gold, starting at our base camp.
When Ming and I finally finished our gold-collecting, all I could do was stare in awe at the cracked pot of glimmering, small gold specks. We then decided to buy some food from the local Butler.
The meat is not as great as expected, and most of the bag is just filled with parched leaves. Anyway, we’re thinking of selling our speckles gold. News spread out last couple a’ days about digger fights, and Ming and I have tried to avoid them as much as possible, for we’re paranoid about gettin’ in one.
About one year has passed. All the alluvial gold has now been discovered. Ming and I have already made a livin’ out of our sold gold every month, but we’re spendin’ it as fast as we’re receiving it.
Ming and I have felt tension everywhere throughout the goldfields, so many license inspections. Luckily, Ming brought ones for us more than a year ago. our simple schedule is the same; Get up, have breakfast, dig for gold, lunch, dig, break, dinner and bed. At least twice a week either Ming or I go to the local Butler/market to buy new resources and food. We also overheard rumours of a stockade being built of overturned tents, carts and fragmented tools.
When we heard rumours about a stockade, we didn’t think it was real. Nevertheless, it was. And on tomorrow, the supposed most brutal battle between digger and police ever known to mankind, will be occurring. Ming and I decided to not go amongst them in case we were captured. This just might be it.
Our tent was ruptured. Ming’s heart was too. “MING!’ I screamed. However, there was no time to mourn for him, as I saw several agitated police officers approach me rapidly. I withdrew the only plan I had: drop dead. It was scary, but surely there was definitely worse out there on the goldfields. “I plan to never dig for gold again,” I thought silently. “That is if I am still alive after the is.”
The police officers ran past me, scanning the battlefield for any potential enemies. I’d lost. Especially for Ming. “for Ming, I shall say this in you are name,” I managed not to choke up. Hey, I have feelings too. ” I love you bro there, as faithful companion throughout all the is years,” I continued. “Without losing belief in me, or finding gold.
My dejected and melancholy voice echoed through my throbbing head. I dug desperately for my rusty shovel and using it, unearthed an opening just big enough for Ming to be laid in. As I encased the last of poor Ming’s body, a speck of shiny gold fell out. “Great,” I thought. ” Now?! Why now the gold a has to come?!” I was infuriated. But, I guess that is the price for my indulgent-selfishness.
After that horrific, stormy day, I did the only thing I could. I retreated back to good old China.