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The Boy Teacher And The Father Student 5 (Letters Home, The Costs of Passion)
Feeling The Sun and the Son
I am so sorry I have missed your ballgames. You know how I love them so. Please say hi to Gilberto’s and Angelo’s dads for me. Being away is hard. But at least I am not on deployment like Andrew’s and Ivan’s fathers. Tell them that I am their biggest fan.
Except for being away it is good here. Lately I wish they had someone else to do my job so I could come home. But there aren’t many guys who do what I do as a cultural government expert. Not even one guy comes to mind that knows eight members of the politburo. Westerners think that businesses make things happen here whereas here it is government.
Hey I hiked 3 kilometers up a mountain to see a Buddhist shrine in the mountains. It was too cool. But now they gave me a bodyguard to keep an eye on me, not sure it is to keep me safe. And don’t get all worried but a cook tried to poison me by feeding me a poisonous frog’s skin in my soup. I got real sick but only for a few hours. I hope they do not hurt the cook too much but I am sorry to say he is in jail.
I am up in a City they call Hanoi and some people still hate Americans. But that is my job, to make them not hate us. Silly huh? We are here to make people not hate us so we have to hang out with people who hate us.
My job is to help them accept the international internet and allow open communications and marketing with the world. Our idea is that it will create freedom of expression and theirs is that it will create influx of money. (look up influx)
Son, I love you so much and miss you even more. Be good to your mom and sisters. That will make you be good and feel good about yourself. Your picture is in my wallet and I pray for you each day. Please pray for me.
Something Going On!
Maybe Daddy is Silly
Life Is A Bit Complicated
Please remember that school (not schooling me ;-) is a place to learn to learn not to be right. Once again you have made me think hard about what and why I do. Again I say to you, thanks for making me a better man.
Hey I will see you in about 72 hours – silly but I am counting them. I heard from your mom you will meet me at that crazy Los Angeles International Airport they call LAX. I hope I do not act too weird decompressing.
Love ya and see you soon.
Baseball is OK, I really like playing but maybe I will not get a scholarship. I can reach home plate now from centerfield with one hop. Remember when you took me to the emergency room when I got hung up on the right field fence? Man was mom mad you did not tell her until we got home. Girls still dig the scar.
Dad you always told me that you give a hand up and not a hand out. Sounds like you are giving a hand out. I think I need you more here than they need you there. There are some grandpas around who I heard call you a traitor. I thought we weren’t at war anymore and only know about Vietnam from school. Why do they hate you? And they hate you there too?
Dad that seems really bad. I don’t think anyone hates me. How can you handle being hated?
Please come home and safe. I need you.
I hope you like this on a post card with the beautiful gardens down here in Ho Chi Minh. They are everywhere and the streets remind me of our trips to Mexico. I hope you still practice Espanol? I hope you keep up as language builds bridges that others do try to destroy through hate.
Home soon with presents.
Give your sisters and mom a big hug, Com Ong.
I am going to school you. I heard today to; “Think globally and act locally”. That is pretty smart. I am planting some trees tomorrow with other guys on the baseball team. But dad it seems you act globally and think locally. Father Martin asked for more money again to make the church “better”. I think I will quit being an acolyte, I hope you are not disappointed.
Do you really think that you are making a good influence on the world? My history teacher said that all us students should ask our parents. I do not understand really. Seems real weird to me.
I love you and miss you,
Do you think you know the answers to your questions? Because I sure as hell do not. But please remind me.
(We meet and I am much the worse for wear. Tokyo meetings ended well but the process would make a major politician pass out. Somehow my son finds me and quickly gets me the hell out of there. He gets it and accepts me passing out for an hour or so. We pull into a lookout point at Camp Pendelton. Alright we are ready to rock. Hot coffee and a short jog around the place and view of the Pacific Ocean from “the other side)
I Just Like It
Just For The Fun Of It
What You Forget is Dangerous
F: What is new?
B: We are going to war with Russia and you are due in DC tomorrow.
F: How the hell do you know that son?
B: Fake dad, relax and chillax.
F: You are a dog son.
F: How is your Vanessa doing?
B: She is doing just fine with Zack.
F: Life is a bowl of cherries and each day is the pits.
B: Very funny Dad. Was your trip worth it?
F: Only if you do not have enough to eat.
B: Bullshit dad. You really saw kids with not enough to eat.
F: Let us move on. I need to forget it for a few days, go on a hike with you and do some beach time and work on that swing of yours. Fast hands.
B: No dad I want to get it. Do you mean that there is not enough food in Indo China?
F: Very cool son that you know the old name for South East Asia. You tell me son. Is it a matter of enough food?
B: That is global political science and easy. No it is the distribution and cost that creates for malnutrition. But I know you do not work on that so what gives? How does what you do help feed hungry people.
F: Thanks for nothing. Now I question my own worth.
B: Dad I know the answer I was just checking to see if you still believe in it.
F: Aren’t dads and sons supposed to talk about cars and sports and hiking and stuff?
B: You know nothing about cars, not much about sports nowadays and we go hiking not talk about it.
F: Alright, I was just stalling as I know you know. My work has to do with freedoms in a communist country. And I believe that freedoms help people reach their potential and that feeds their children.
Maybe I do not thank you enough for keeping it real. Thanks for reminding me of the goal and not just the day to day.
F: Now my turn, have you picked a University for next year?
B: Yes, I am accepted to UC Santa Cruz. The best philosophy school in Cal. Don’t make that face, your first degree was in philosophy.
F: And look where that got me.
B: Well it got you me!
F: Touche’, are you old enough to drink yet, I need one.
B: Dad when you need one is exactly when you don’t, remember you taught me that.