Regarding Tough Days

I received some really lovely comments about that blog I wrote.  They made me feel warm inside and hugged outside, both highly rewarding.  Thank you for those sweet words, for sharing some feelings with me, for being at the other end and letting me know you are there.  It means a lot to me.  For those who read that blog and didn’t comment, that’s ok too.  Somehow I felt connected to you as I wrote it and afterwards, perhaps while you were reading what I wrote.

Now it is the day after Thanksgiving here, the beginning of the fifth day of Chanukah.  My wife took a video of me saying the blessings and lighting the candles and posted it on her Facebook page.  Despite the not very melodic singing, the prayers were and are heartfelt.  Tonight began Shabbat, so I am supposed to rest.  Hopefully G-D will understand that this is not work for me, wait, scratch the “Hopefully”.  G-D understands that this is not work for me.  Hopefully he will permit me this recreation.  So far so good.

I just realized that Thanksgiving is not about WHAT you eat, but rather that you share the meal with people you like and love.  Turkey is traditional, but only to Americans who were given the bird by the native Americans.  A while later the settlers, immigrants all, paid back the generosity by giving the natives Smallpox and wars which eventually wiped out most of the noble and sort of kind people.  This established the tradition carried on even today of invading a country, destroying the ecology, economy, and life of the inhabitants in order to bring religion, “democratic” (the quotes are because the leaders are people installed by the invading Americans like the crooks in Iraq, the monsters in Libya, the taliban and then not the taliban in Afghanistan) government, and “freedom”.  I’m not so sure that exchanging one dictator with terrifying secret torture police is worse or less free than the secret Blackstone(?) private cops and the US installed “Temporary” leader is what I would call improving the situation.  Actually I’m sure it is not.  

But I digress.  I started out intending to explain celebrating Thanksgiving in a land where people do not like turkey, think stuffing is food for pigs, hate gravy, and use Pumpkin Pie much the same way a US native would use ipecac.  All those American delicacies make Vietnamese people want to throw up, and they want to do it ON ME!  Retribution for serving such vile food.  This is my way of making excuses for having just the two of us at dinner yesterday  and just me alone for tonight.  My wife wouldn’t even sit at the table with my turkey, dressing, gravy, browned potatoes, and pumpkin pie.  In fact, she went out for dinner with friends–friends who would not come over to eat that American junk.

I think next year we will skip the turkey and have boiled chicken chopped into bite size pieces, pickled vegetables, soup with noodles, egg roll with noodles, barbecue pork with noodles, shrimp with noodles, chicken with two kinds of noodles, bony fish chopped up in a pile of noodles, and noodle layered with veggies, more noodles, and fried noodles.  I bet the whole family will come for dinner and relatives we haven’t seen for 10 years will fly in from Hanoi and Boston to join us at the meal served at floor level.

Me, I’m going out for dinner.

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3 thoughts on “Regarding Tough Days

  1. You continue your rant against the Americans, of whom you are one. It seems more effective to work for change of all the ills which so torment you. It is difficult to effect change while living in Vietnam; it may be easier for you to acknowledge and value the good that has come out of the U.S.A. rather than only the evil, which I admit does exist , and will continue, so long as humans value only themselves. There are many countries with worse records than the U.S.A; can you name many with better records? Canada , perhaps.

    I missed your blog on Rough Days, having been in Australia and New Zealand for more than four weeks( when I include San Francisco), and was unable to catch up on every email received.

    Hope you and Kim Lien are well, and continue to be supportive of one another.

    With Love,

    Dorothy Shoichet

  2. Well said.

    I thought the other blog was also well said but I didn’t like reading about death. Yours mine our friends our relatives. I’d rather drink “to life.”

    L’chaim.

    David

    >

  3. These two Villas both appear gorgeous. Perhaps instead of the summer 2015, we would do December either 2014, or 2015. Or we could still do summer escapes if that is easier for you and the children’s school schedules. I am game for either /or.

    Love Mother

    Dorothy Shoichet

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