1960 ,8


平易近人 善解人意 心地善良 幽默風趣 性情中人 


音樂欣賞 美食烹調 



國語歌曲 台語歌曲 







Upon hearing of my father’s death, I flew to China from USA in the soonest.

He died within days of being admitted to the hospital.

I was not around in his last breath.

Being the oldest son in the family, not fully coming to senses after jet lag, surrounded by

strangers in a foreign environment, mixed in sadness and grief, I strived to take care of his

journey’s last stop, his funeral, with the kind aid of his Chinese relatives.

I grew up in Taiwan. I had never been to China. My father was born in Guanzhou, China.

He retreated to Taiwan with the Nationalist Army. He spoke Cantonese at home. I could understand his Cantonese

, but I was never able to speak well. When the travel restriction to China was eased, he visited his relatives

and lived there quite some time. I promised to meet him in his hometown; unfortunately

I never kept my promise because of my business in the States.

A couple of months prior to his death, he called me to announce his wedding.

I could hear the excitement in his voice.

He told me he found someone who truly cared for him. I blurted my congratulation at first, then I began to feel

my congratulation came too soon, after realizing her age was less than half of his. I tried to talk him out of marriage.

“Can’t you live together without a marriage?” I persuaded.

“She does not like that. She wants to be my wife legally.”

“How much do you know about her?” I queried him.

“By destiny she comes to my life. Everything seems to be in order

when she is with me. We talk about heaven south and earth north. She shares her life

with me and I share mine with her. I know she is the one.”

“Can’t you wait a year or two?” I persisted trying.

“I love her and I want to show how much I love her.”

I asked him again if this was something he decided to do. If he

was happy with his decision.

“I am positive. I have never felt happier since your mother died. I wish all of you could

come to my wedding.”

I did not attend his wedding and neither did my brothers.

All of us were at his funeral including his newly wed. It came as a surprise to see the large number

of his relatives and friends paying their final respect. I felt a bit uneasy introduced to them because this was the first

time I met them. I greeted everyone of them according to customs and traditions to show appreciation for

their coming on my family’s behalf. Everyone mumbled a few words which I did not quite get. They were asked to

stay with us for a decent meal after the funeral service before they went their separate ways. When the meal was midway

thru its course, I saw my brother handing out one hundred United States dollars to each of those folks helping with

the funeral. Some folks even got drunk later in the meal.

I got so angry that I shouted to them, “We just had a burial.

We are not having a party. Don’t you forget what you are here for!”

I asked my brother in a few days why he was doing that.

He replied somebody nudged him to do so.

His newly wed returned to Taiwan right after the funeral without saying anything. Things wrapped in China,

exhausted and almost burned out, I managed to buy gifts for relatives to thank them from the bottom of my heart.

I thought I had reached a closure, having done every detail, calling

such and such relatives to give my thanks one more time and sending

a thank you note to relatives far away until I was reminded by a relative.

This relative consulted me thru the entire funeral process.

At the airport I was about to board the airplane for Taiwan, this relative told me,

“There is something I have to tell you before you go.”

Then he numerated who did what at what time,

who paid what on what day, who helped this and that. Without waiting for

him to finish, I emptied my pocket and left him with all the cash I had with a deep bow.

Never did I realize that my father’s newly wed was one step before me and took charge of

my father’s odds and ends after his death. She called me before I got a chance to call her.

“Come pick up your daddy’s stuff.” She told me briefly on the phone.

I grew up in military housing quarters because my father was in the military. Then due to Taiwanese

government policy, most of the military houses were bulldozed and replaced with high rise

apartment buildings, one unit of which was assigned to my father. When I arrived in my childhood

place, I was shocked to see all the tall apartment buildings, one next to another, cars parked everywhere,

children chasing in narrow streets. I still remembered this place where I played colorful marbles, rubber

strings, round cards, and

plastic figurines, where I went to guava farms in the hills to steal unripe guavas, where

I went to nearby rice fields to fish for frogs after farmers had harvested their labor, where I baked yams

in sand in a bomb shelter, where I paraded with my fire torch triumphantly

during the Lantern Festival with a group of kids. This place was full of sweet memory.

When I approached the apartment building where my father used to live, I saw piles of my father’s

clothes on the ground. I rang the door bell to no avail.

I walked away with my daddy’s clothes on my shoulder. Suddenly I came to a rude awakening;

what’s left of my father was on my shoulders. Tears streaming down my face,

my childhood home was gone forever, I thought to myself.

Copyright © www.penpal.tw All Rights Reserved By Penpal筆友天地 以上內容皆由各著作權所有人所提供,請勿擅自引用或轉載,並僅遵著作權法等相關規定, 若有違相關法令請<關於我們->聯絡我們> 。我們將以最快速度通知各著作權所有人且將本文章下架,以維持本平台資訊之公正性及適法性。