My Father served the U.S. Government in one way or the other all of his adult life. From 1956 to 1962 he was First Secretary of the American Embassy in Manila in what was then called the Philippine Islands. (Now it’s the Republic Of The Philippines) I went to the American School my junior year of high school. When I would return in 1961 after three quarters at Antioch College in Yellow Springs, Ohio I would attend the Ateneo De Manila, but that is another story for another time.
My connection with the Philippines would have a resounding effect on my life in many ways. My uncle fought in the Pacific Theater in WWII. He landed in the Philippines. My dad was there on his way to Tokyo in 1945. In a distant but real way, my blood lives there. I spent two days with newly minted ‘old’ friends and we talked about the very old days and much was shared by the children of people who’s parents fled Nazi Germany so they could be born in China, wind up in the Philippines and become Americans. Again, as a second generation American, the successful tale of immigration is important to me. I recommend the movies, Rescue In The Philippines… Escape From The Holocaust… The Secret War In The Pacific, and Victims Of Circumstance about the internments in Sta. Thomas.
You know, I could and do complain about a lot of things. Obamacare is not treating my family well. Does it make me mad? Sure. But you know what, I am not going to find myself herded into a gulag tomorrow… no one is going to behead me or my wife and my children are not going to be bayoneted. We are not going to starve and even though I have had amoebic dysentery, malaria and dengue fever, I’m probably not going to get them again. My little problems are an embarrassment of riches, and I am grateful for that.
On our time off, I chose to go to Wolfeboro, NH to the Wright Museum, a museum dedicated to the years of WWII. My father and my two uncles served. My Uncle Tarmo’s flag resides with honor in our music room. I mentioned this to the docent when we went in. She was my age… 72 or so. She had her father’s flag, her uncles flag and her husband’s flag from Vietnam. I thanked her and her family for their ultimate service. It brought tears to my eyes for sure. Anyway… here are some picture I took at the museum.
Well, suffice it to say… it’s been a couple of days to remember. Nothing like old friends and nothing like new either. It’s also good to be able to put your like into perspective from time to time. And I must also pay tribute to our current ‘Greatest Generation,’ who serve our country world wide. Thanks y’all. there’s an old guitar picker down in Southeast Ohio who thanks and honors you.
Already then. I’m at Logan airport heading for JFK and then on to London and Finland.
I’m off folks. More from across the pond. Onward!