Mastodon Michael Perry

Stuff I never thought I’d do again

Life is an evolving circle of things I am pretty sure. Decades ago, my ex-wife and I bought a huge home in California. Five bedrooms. Then we had one child. The house was really nice but after some years it became a prison of sorts. Perhaps the worst prison is the one where the bars are invisible. By late 2009, we had issues but I persisted living there because she asked. We would separate and she went her way with her new lover. I stayed in the house, imprisoned by the bars that wrapped themselves around my movements. Stayed for the now two kids. By 2014, I moved out to a room. I would live in rooms from then on. My maxim really was not to own things. I still believe things are evil inherently and basically. They are their own prisons and we just give in to them. So a room was no commitment besides monthly to pay. Much like how I would live later when I retired and left for Asia. A series of small rooms on Airbnb or apartments I would find. Small places which held just enough to keep life going but no stuff.

Then so many things transpired when looking slightly back, I decided in 2020 I wanted to slow down so I approached a year in Vietnam as a place to just stop. That would happen but not because of my desire but a global pandemic. Then Vietnam shut down in March of 2020 and I stayed for almost 2 years. I lived in a small room which cost so little but I had these wonderful Vietnamese friends who cared for me, called me, checked on me. Fewer expat friends due to my own choice. I cannot stand expats for the most part so I stay away. To me, they are entitled, obnoxious, boring types who prefer their own company in small stuffy bars filled with other old guys or women but yet in some fantastic and different country. Why? No fucking idea.

I’m writing all this to get around to now because life is a circle of things. Perhaps a strange Venn diagram of some kind with but one circle that overlaps everything. Now it is 2023 and I live in Cambodia in one of the little parts of the circle. I met this wonderful woman Alin that suddenly enriched my life, gave me things I thought I had lost. Good sex, wonderful times, a friend too. This person that tells me,

you lead and I follow

So different than my ex-wife who had her own particular circle of disaster for me. A closed little thing. Prison bars I could not see but that locked me in. Now things are open. The country rocks and rolls to finding a new person when I thought I would go through remaining days with no one to lean on, to enjoy touching, meeting her mom and family. Being told I am appreciated and loved.

Today my Alin went out and bought the household things on her own. I did not do much of anything. She does not like me shopping with her because prices go up when they see me. It is the so-called barang or foreigner effect. Prices will jump by degrees and it pisses her off. Now we have this little apartment which has become this one thing I thought I would never have again. Filled with some stuff. Stuff again that is not a prison or a lock on a door but freedom to go as I wish and she wishes. I tell her today,

we will go to Battambang Cambodia

She merely smiles. Touches my hand. And she says,

where my love goes, I go

And how could life be any more but really with only a few things to account for. I don’t know. I look back and see the prison with the invisible bars that forever limited me, my choices but also let me do the things for my children I felt should be done. My daughter telling me to go on and find someone special that I could love.

Dear Arry, I did that. It just took awhile. I found stuff again I could never do without. You were right way back when. I did find someone but like life is, it all circles around and takes time. Yet I am pretty sure time is not real because it madly ticks away and means nothing with all its checks and balances. Instead I take this wonderful creature life has given me and find a release.

Source: Imaginary Letter to my Daughter Arry, 2023

Now I’ll wait until she returns and we will go have pool time. Talk and laugh. Go to dinner. Come back to a life we both love.

February 21, 2023