Vietnam: Forty-five Years Later
What Are The Odds?
(Part 3 of 3)
Needless to say, I was a nervous wreck. Forty-five years is a long time. I know I have changed from a handsome young soldier into an ugly old man.
Perhaps she wouldn’t recognize me. Perhaps I wouldn’t recognize her either. Perhaps she wouldn’t want to have anything to do with me. Maybe this would be the wrong person altogether. I didn’t know what to expect.
My driver led the way onto the front porch and shouted something in Vietnamese. I assumed he was saying hello and asking if anyone was home.
My driver pointed to the other girl on the flyer, apparently asking Bah if she knew her. This led to a long conversation and a lot of pointing down the street.
By now I had attracted the attention of neighbors and there was a constant stream of people going up and down the road. Their eyes were all on me.
Neither Bah nor Tay could speak more than a few words of English, and what little Vietnamese I once knew had long since been forgotten.
I need to add that I had my wonderful wife and grandson with me on this adventure. They got to share my reunion with my Vietnamese friends. I wrote this travelogue from my point of view because for an hour or two I was alone with my memories. I felt like I was in some sort of time warp between yesterday and today.
You can read more about Tay and Bah when we were all much younger in my short story book, “Blame It On Bangkok”, which can be downloaded for free from the internet.
Copyright: J. F. Gump 2013
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“I am only one, but I am one. I can't do everything, but I can do something. The something I ought to do, I can do, and by the grace of God, I will.” ~Everett Hale