The damn trees
I saw him for the first time in six year. It was Christmas Day.
I wanted to talk to him about the things most grandparents and grandkids talk about. But he just talked about the house. And the trees. The damn trees. They are located on some property he owns in the countryside next to the house — the damn house — which he recently built.
I could tell you what he said — about the damn house, about the damn trees. But I don’t want hear it again, if even in my head.
The hard part is that I love him, and he loves me. But people who love each other don’t talk about land and trees and money — at least not all the time, at least I don’t think.
When I saw him on Christmas, I thought, maybe, things would be different — that, maybe, he would talk about something else. I hoped he would tell us about growing up in old Korea, fighting for every meal. Or he would talk about how he raised me. Or, at least, I hoped he’d say Merry Christmas — or even remember that it was Christmas. But he didn’t. He just talked about the damn house, the damn trees and the damn money. Oh, and also “success” — but only because that means more damn money.
But what really pissed me off was when he put his hand on my leg and authoritatively said, “In the end, money is what we need. Without money, you can’t do anything.” I would’ve argued the point. But my Korean isn’t good enough to say anything substantive. So I just nodded, faked a smile — and then felt pissed, so I blogged about it.
Yeah, I know: Not the right thing to do.
I probably wouldn’t be writing this if he could read English, or if he could use a computer. But maybe if we could communicate, he would stop — change.
Or maybe I just don’t understand. Maybe I’m wrong. Maybe the damn money, the damn house and the damn trees really are important. Maybe they mean something more, something different. Maybe they’re a symbol for something substantial — something profound.
I really hope so.
Because I really want to like him.
January 2, 2011