Please enjoy the original writing, Christian travel journal, and photography by a hapa haole named Gail Rhea.

Original Writing & Photography

by Gail Rhea






Gail Rhea


     It was a hot, hot, day.  It was so hot, the birds didn’t want to sing.  It was so hot, the wind didn’t want to blow.  Little brown-haired Sarah listened to the buzz of the air conditioner and decided to play with the little girl who lived in her parents’ bedroom.

     She went into their room to see if the other girl was there.  Yes!  There she was in the same place she was before.  When her parents told her, “It’s a mirror,” and explained that the other little girl was a reflection of herself, Sarah believed them.


     Today, as before, the other little girl was dressed just like Sarah.  They both wore white tank tops with blue polka dots and blue shorts.  Sarah stood close to the mirror and gazed at the other little girl’s brown eyes.  The other little girl gazed back.



     “What’s your name?”

     “What’s your name?”

     “Why do you talk the same as me?”

     “Why do you talk the same as me?”

     Sarah frowned.  The other girl frowned back.  Sarah made a funny face.  So did she.  They stuck their tongues out at each other.  Sarah moved closer and closer until she tasted the slippery smoothness of the glass.  She didn’t see Momma come in.

     “Sarah, dear, don’t lick the mirror.  Come, it’s time for lunch,” Momma said.

     Later that afternoon, Sarah and her mother went to the mall.  “Look at those girls, Momma!  They look just the same!”

     “Yes, dear.  Don’t point, it’s rude.”

     “But, Momma!  Why do they look the same?”

     “Because they’re identical twin sisters.  Identical means that they’re the same and twin means there’s two of them.  Some parents like to dress twins alike.”

     “I have a twin sister, too, Momma.”


     “Yes.  The little girl in your room is the same as me and we wear the same clothes all the time.”

     “Yes, dear.  Now, come along.”

     When Sarah got home from the mall, she rushed into her parents’ room to look for the other little girl.  “Hello, Twin Sister.”

     Twin Sister said, “Hello, Twin Sister” back at Sarah.

     “Sarah!" Momma called, "You can’t play too long.  We have to go and pick up your Daddy soon.”

     “Yes, Momma.  I just wanted to see my twin sister again.”

     Sarah left to get a picture book from her room.  When she returned, she sat on the floor right next to the mirror.  She turned the pages slowly and started to tell the other little girl a story about the pictures.  But, oh, suddenly, her eyelids were so very heavy.  She yawned.  Her eyelids fluttered.  Little Sarah closed her eyes and rested her head against the mirror.

     “Would you like to have some milk and cookies?”

     Sarah stirred.  That wasn’t Momma.  She blinked.

     “Would you like to have some milk and cookies?”  Twin Sister whispered into Sarah’s ear.

     Sarah’s eyes opened wide.  “Sure!” she said.

     “Here, take my hand.”

     Sarah stood up and reached out to Twin Sister.  As she touched the mirror, a chill passed through her fingertips and went up her arm.  She stepped forward, sliding easily through the coolness of the glass.  She looked around.  Everything looked the same, but...

    “Everything’s backwards!” Sarah exclaimed.

     Twin Sister led Sarah out of her parents’ room turning left instead of right.  The fresh, warm aroma of baking surrounded the woman who met them in the short hall carrying two small plates.  “I thought you’d like to have your milk and cookies in your room, dear,” she said.

     “Momma?” Sarah said.

     “No,” said Twin Sister, “that’s my Momma.”  In Twin Sister’s bedroom, Sarah’s search for familiar objects immediately found the red gingham bedspread and curtains, bookcase, and toy box.  In the corner, stood a child-sized table with two chairs and two cups of milk.  Twin’s Momma set the two plates of brown cookies on the table.

     The two girls sat down.  Eagerly, they picked up their cookies and bit into them.

     “Mmm, mmm.  These are good!”

     “May we go outside to play?” Twin Sister asked her Momma.

     “Not today, dear.  There’s not enough time.  We have to go pick up your Daddy, soon,” Twin’s Momma replied.

     The two girls were crunching the last of their cookies when Twin’s Momma returned.  “Sarah, you have to go home, now.  It’s time for us to leave.”

     Twin Sister walked back to the mirror with Sarah.  “I’m glad you could come.”

     “Me, too!  ‘Bye.”  Sarah slid through the glass, turned, and waved at her reflection.

     “Oh, there you are, dear.  It’s time for us to leave.  You need to wipe off your milk mustache.  Come on, or we’ll be late!”

     Sarah followed her mother out to the car.











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