On death

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There is nothing to make you feel desperately far away from home as a phone call announcing someone’s death. At eleven PM a couple of days ago my mother called me to let me know that my grandfather had died peacefully in his sleep. At 88 years old, that isn’t a bad way to go. And yet, it was still devastating. For the first time in my two years of working in Korea, I took a personal day. My school was really nice about it and suggested that I take two days off but really, one was enough. Yesterday, I just couldn’t face being cheerful and energetic after being up so late mourning. Today I was back and my students cheered me up just by being themselves.  

My grandfather was unfailingly kind, supportive, and funny.  Early this morning my mom put me on speaker phone while the family told stories for the rabbi to gather for the eulogy.  I couldn’t put my finger on any one thing that he did that was wonderful and yet he was the best grandfather I could have asked for.

There is nothing to make you feel desperately far away from home as a phone call announcing someone’s death. At eleven PM a couple of days ago my mother called me to let me know that my grandfather had died peacefully in his sleep. At 88 years old, that isn’t a bad way to go. And yet, it was still devastating. For the first time in my two years of working in Korea, I took a personal day. My school was really nice about it and suggested that I take two days off but really, one was enough. Yesterday, I just couldn’t face being cheerful and energetic after being up so late mourning. Today I was back and my students cheered me up just by being themselves.  

My grandfather was unfailingly kind, supportive, and funny.  Early this morning my mom put me on speaker phone while the family told stories for the rabbi to gather for the eulogy.  I couldn’t put my finger on any one thing that he did that was wonderful and yet he was the best grandfather I could have asked for.

It’s hard to be so far from home when all I want is my family.  I’m giving myself a few days from being responsible. I’ll finish blogging about Cambodia soon enough though.



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