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My Sweet Memory This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

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   My Sweet Memory

by L. T., Lynn, MA

When I was twelve years old, I lived in a refugee camp in the Philippines. In this camp, everyone was expected to go to school. In that school I met many students who became friends. There was a teacher whose name was Tom. He looked about 60 with a round, gentle-looking face. He had a high nose and black and gray hair, which went well with his brown eyes. He dressed in a black shirt and black pants, which made him look like a priest.

The neighborhood where I lived was near the place reserved only for teachers to live. Therefore, it was easy for us to get together. Every day we met in school. He taught English and the American way of life. He hoped that when we got to the United States, we would be able to adapt to a new life.

After school and during weekends I spent my free time with him, trying to learn more English. He showed me some very good movies about American history, which had Indians, and showed how this country became the United States. Every weekend I would go to his house very early in the morning. He always was ready to run with me because he told me that exercise is very helpful to the body. After the long run we would have a walk up the hill. When we reached the top we sat down to watch the sunrise. Once he said, "It's worth getting up early to see such a beautiful sight."

"Yes, it is. The sun looks very pretty," I said.

My lovely days with him went on until one day my family received a letter that told us to be ready to go to the United States. My family was so happy that my brothers and sisters jumped for joy. I was happy too, but my feelings were mixed with some sadness. I knew that I was going to miss my friends and teachers.

At the time my family was preparing all the valuable and important things for the trip, I ran to my teachers, and friends: to tell them the good news. I asked my teachers for their addresses so that I could write letters to them.

Tom received my news. He congratulated me and wished me good luck. I looked into his bright eyes, wet with sadness, remembering that he told me to be brave. I didn't want to cry but I could not hold back my tears. He smiled at me, and I smiled back. We hugged each other, and he asked me to take a walk. We made the last walk together to the old hill, but this time it was changed. We both were quiet. We reached the hill at the time the sun was going down. This time we sat together and instead of watching the sunrise, we were watching the sunset.

It was I who started first. "Do you like to watch the sunset?"

"Yes, but it looks so sad," he answered.

We kept watching until the sun went down behind the farthest mountain. We both stood up, and he said, Loc, I know you are going to miss me. I will miss you, too. But no matter how long we sit here, we still have to separate. Don't forget what I taught you. The road to success is always under construction. He said good-bye to me and left. I went on my way, walking home with all the sweetest memories.


This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.






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