Valentine’s Day. There must be a reason why this 14th Day of the Second Month got this wonderful rank in the heart of almost every human being. I was sipping a drink at the beach club, waiting for my tourists to come back from the beach of Vung Tau Cap St-Jacques. A Swiss tourist came and sat at the same table where I was. “Bonjour, vous êtes Suisse?” I said. “Oh, he replied, so you are ONE of the faceless and silent followers in charge of the security for foreign tourists to your country?” He replied. “Monsieur, our tradition is to greet visitors who come to our country to make them feel welcome as they have traveled thousands of miles to reach our land”, I retorted, annoyed. “But, if this is the way you feel, then Au Revoir”. Now, 30 years later, here I am, sitting in Switzerland, blog-coaching my countrymen at home, how to set up their WP blog and start creative writing. What if I did not say “Bonjour” to that charming Swiss tourist that day in French, what if I did not write back to him to apologize for missing OUR first date, what if he had never got his entry visa to Vietnam. What if? Thank you for this posting.
“I’m not supposed to be here,” Nadia muttered to herself. “I don’t belong here.”
She was examining one of the many family portraits taken a few years ago. The model family. Father, mother, two loving children were all smiling. It was one of their annual family photos taken on Mother’s Day. Nadia smiled, remembering how ill-tempered their daughter, Pia, was during the photo session. She wouldn’t settle down and cried for her mother to stay with her while having her photo taken.
Nadia recalled that was the day she discovered the steamy text message threads between her husband and Yolanda, his co-worker. He worked late every night and sometimes on weekends. Deadlines, he had said. Always deadlines. There was never a regular working day in his world, apparently. And the eager Yolanda was always willing to share the work with him. They worked together, traveled together, and played together. Nadia bit her lower lip as the photos from the text messages flashed through her memory.
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