Life in the Land of the Rising Sun

Saturday, June 02, 2007


It was actually a good day today. It was chilly and drizzly this morning, and I was so overcome with fatigue (read "lack of sleep") that I thought for sure I was going to pass out several times during the day. Still, it refused to be a bad day. My classes today all went really well, even the one that tends to be really annoying most of the time. My afterschool cleanup crew did their jobs well and without complaint. The Flying Egghead's rehearsal today for tomorrow's performance, the first of the new school year, sounded great. The student teacher I'm training has so far been just outstanding. The PTA meeting at my kids' school that I was not only obliged to attend but chair was a bit of a hassle, sometimes downright humiliating, but we managed to get everything done alright with a minimum of fuss (and I managed to stay awake till the end...quite a feat, I'd say, all things considered!).

But then I came home to some news that hit me like a rubber mallet to the skull.

Remember the father-and-son team that did the roofing and aluminum siding as part of our home construction project? The father being that awesome, old man with poor hearing but a quick wit, skilled hands, and a wealth of knowledge about his trade? The son being that youngish-looking, thirty-something man who was not only a skilled worker but also was so great with my kids (who saw him like a big brother) and helped us so much with different things on the side like moving heavy furniture?

Well, it's no longer a father-and-son team. Now it's just the father. Only about a week after the work on our house was finished, the son got in a car accident. He wasn't seriously hurt, but apparently he had an expired license, no insurance, and he was driving a car whose mandatory safety inspection was long since past due. To make matters worse, the accident was apparently his fault. He was looking at a considerable expense in fines and compensation...not to mention possible jail time. He had already been suffering from a degree of depression for various reasons (something I'd noticed while they were here working). This last affair proved to be just too much. He wound up taking his own life.

Things like that aren't supposed to happen.

The old man is still going as best he can, but he looks understandably weakened. I really have to wonder what's going to become of him and the trade he has run for so long. I guess our house was the last thing his son worked on. We have that to remember him well as the soccer ball he and my kids had so much fun kicking about during his breaks.

You just never know, do you? All I know is that I'll never look at my new walls and roof the same way again.


  • Yeh like you said.."You never know"...

    I think such things make us ponder even more when we actually know the person being involved.

    Some time ago,I heard some news that really got me thinking for days.I had befriended this girl at uni and she was engaged to some guy I knew only by name.Then one day I heard that her fiancé was diagnosed with cancer.I thought how hard it was on them...And last year,the guy passed away.Instantly I thought abt my friend and how she must be taking all of this...

    Life comes with no promises and no guarantees... :(

    By Anonymous angele, at 4:06 AM  

  • You know our story Moody, there are no guarantees about anything in life.

    I feel bad for the father, how he must be feeling, trying to carry on against the tide of his son's death.

    I truly hope that the father has a support network, and understanding family & friends.

    By Blogger ladybug, at 9:58 AM  

  • Very sad. There was nothing that the young man could not have dealt with given time and patience. No matter how bad life seems, it for me it has been pretty beak at times, it simply is not worth giving up, ever. I think that our heavenly Father can always make the time to resolve issues we can not do on our own. Suicide is never the answer, but often the choice.

    Don't take it personally. And I hope you can learn from this in ways only you and I know.

    By Blogger Pa've, at 11:04 AM  

  • That is sad. My heart goes out to the father. The conditions that lead to that kind of thing are many and complex and in the end we are left to wonder what might have happened along that long chain which could have changed the outcome.

    By Blogger Pandabonium, at 5:49 PM  

  • Gosh, now there is a tinge of sadness to your new home. And now you will never ever forget him or his father...

    By Blogger Olivia, at 3:33 AM  

  • Its’ strange that despair makes suicide seem like a rational choice… The work he did proved he really had something to contribute but now the work on your house is the last thing he did… I don’t what else to say, besides that fact that its so sad…

    By Blogger Swinebread, at 10:55 PM  

  • Life has its up and down.. and this too shall pass... I hope.

    The more I hear this story, the more I take refuge to impermanence, life is suffering and mindful in whatever we do, esp during driving.

    Hope he is getting better.

    By Blogger Robin, at 12:49 PM  

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