There are two things you could always say about my pops (seen here sharing lunch with a group of Thai Science Teachers.). Actually now that I think about it there are three things you could always say about my father.
- The first was my father strove to be a life long learner. He was always trying to figure out how things worked. When it came to gardening and many other things he often did have a better way to do things.
- Dad was a teacher at heart. Get 20 people around him and the teaching would begin. I think of all the things he taught me over the years and I miss that.
- Oh yeah and the few times I called my dad pops didn’t go over well. That was not his style. Dad was dad from the get go and pops was not one of the names we called him (twice).
He so loved Thailand. I think the time we spent in 1971 and 1972 changed dad. He loved the culture, the people and in the end the opportunity to be a part of the change in that great country. Thailand is a place you may not be current in, but it is a place that never leaves your heart.
Thailand is a land of time as well. It was strange coming from the US where the oldest buildings in the town I grew up were barely 100 years old. Most of the old buildings were 50, 60 years old. To a land that didn’t consider a building old until it had been around for 500 years.
I learned so much that year in Thailand. I learned first off what it meant to be a minority (one of few) versus being part of the majority. I also learned that when the majority welcomes the minority the world is a better place. I never felt out of place or unwelcome when I was in Thailand. Truly in the end my sisters and I were different than many of the children we were around. In the land of smiles everyone was accepted.
Here a power lunch. The person in the center of the picture was Kathleen Hart. She introduced me to Clotted Cream (or what we call Whipped Cream in the States). Miss Hart was one of the smartest people I have ever met. She didn’t do well with children but that was because she wasn’t often around them. She was my mother’s dearest friend for more than 40 years. They met in Thailand Miss Hart from England and mom from the States and became fast friends. Miss Hart passed away about two years before dad did. The world lost a great mind when she passed.
Like I said my time in Thailand opened my mind to differences. I can honestly say I only worry about the ksi8lls of the person in front of me. I don’t worry about anything else. Thailand opened that acceptance door for me and I am forever in its debt.