My favorite all time picture of my dad and I was taken at my first wedding. Dad and I standing side by side and arm in arm smiling at the camera. I have so many memories of dad smiling. Often because he had just said something or done something to entertain himself. But also because in the end he loved the world around him.
Another great memory I have is visiting my parents on the way home from Malaysia in 2005. I spent the weekend with them in Bangkok. Dad was Ajhan again. He was a simple man in that as long as he felt he had something to give he gave it. His friends and colleagues in Thailand wanted information from him and he just lit up.
Mom and her friend Miss Hart took me to a restaurant near the Chao Phraya river that runs nearly through the city. We had a wonderful brunch at the hotel and I got to play grandpa and pay. My grandfather taught me a number of tricks you could use to make sure they always brought you the bill instead of anyone else at the table. I learned at the hand of the master. We had a wonderful meal – the buffet had virtually everything you could ask for.
Why the story about lunch? First it was a wonderful chance to hang out with mom and Miss Hart. Miss Hart and mom became friends in 1972 and 33 years later they were still close and now dear friends. Miss Hart was English and often very proper but she made the best clotted cream apple pie on earth. We sat at that buffet and talked for over an hour. Then headed back to the IPST building where dad was teaching.
The Ajhan had been teaching all day and was ready for dinner when we got back to IPST. The upper floors of the IPST building were living quarters for visiting scholars and the rest of the building was the science, math and education preparation area for the people working for IPST. We ended up going to a seafood place that was about 4 miles away from IPST. I love Thai seafood. Partially because it reminded me of 1972 and partially because it is amazing. We sat at the restaurant and talked. The conversation wandered around the various people in the room. It filled me with a sense of pride to see how much the people at the table with us loved Ajhan Hans and Kuhn Sandy. I had long past that moment in life realizing my parents were human. But it was nice for a couple of hours to get to see them through the eyes of others.
.your loving son