Song for Adam

Though Adam was a friend of mine, I did not know him well
He was alone into his distance
He was deep into his well
I could guess what he was laughing at, but I couldnt really tell
Now the story’s told that Adam jumped, but I’ve been thinking that he fell

Together we went traveling, as we received the call
His destination India, and I had none at all
Well, I still remember laughing with our backs against the wall
So free of fear, we never thought that one of us might fall

I sit before my only candle, but its so little light to find my way
Now this story unfolds before my candle
Which is shorter every hour as it reaches for the day
But I feel just like a candle in the way
I guess I’ll get there, but I wouldn’t say for sure

When we parted we were laughing still, as our goodbyes were said
And I never heard from him again as each our lives we led
Except for once in someone elses letter that I read
Until I heard the sudden word that a friend of mine was dead

I sit before my only candle, like a pilgrim sits beside the way
Now this journey appears before my candle
As a song that’s growing fainter the harder that I play
But I fear before I end I’ll fade away
But I guess I’ll get there, though I wouldn’t say for sure

Though Adam was a friend of mine, I did not know him long
And when I stood myself beside him, I never though I was as strong
Still it seems he stopped his singing in the middle of his song
Well I’m not the one to say I know, but I’m hoping he was wrong

I’m holding out my only candle, though its so little light to find my way
Now this story’s been laid beneath my candle
And its shorter every hour as it reaches for the day
Yes, I feel just like a candle in the way
I hope I’ll get there, but I never pray

–Jackson Browne

Today the expat community is abuzz with shock and sadness upon learning of the death of Shawn Matthews, author of the Korea Life Blog and more recently the China Life Blog.

I only knew Shawn from his writing, but he was the type of person I enjoyed sharing adventure with, albeit vicariously. Even as a stranger, I somehow feel diminshed by his loss. I’m not sure how to explain that, but I know on my dark days far from family and friends, I have often been comforted by the words and kind thoughts of my fellow bloggers. Shawn was surrounded by people who loved him, and yet he was still beyond their reach.

As others have said, suicide is incredibly selfish. Whatever pain Shawn was expericing was not escaped, merely transferred to friends and family. But I’m not going to judge, only regret that Shawn chose to stop singing in the middle of his song. And his voice will always be missed by those he left behind.


We beat the Hyatt team from Bless U Pub last night! They had finished 3 games ahead of us to take second place during the regular season, and they had beat us twice previously. So this was a big win for us. We play in the championship round Monday night against Eberhardt of Scrooge Pub. Eberhardt finished first in league play, but we beat them once 10-9 and lost once 10-9. So we are going into the finals feeling confident. We just need to bring our best game.

I didn’t play particularly well last night losing my singles 0-3, but I somewhat redeemed myself in the doubles 701 match, which we took 3-0. Anyway, we celebrated heartily last night. I had the good sense to take today off though, so no hay problema.

Today I attended the Memorial Day Honor Guard ceremony on post. Quite moving really, and I really enjoy that unique military pomp and circumstance stuff. My cell phone died last week, so I picked up another used today. Bought gas and did my grocery shopping. And that is the up to the minute report and my amazing life in Korea.

I’m hoping to be able to report some BIG news (the good kind) in the next couple of weeks. Send me some positive vibes that this dream becomes a reality.


Went to see the doc on post yesterday. She took some history and vitals and ordered a bunch of tests and also referred me to see the internal medicine doc. So, my blood pressure it a tad high (146/80), I have 4 of the 5 risk factors for heart disease, and she speculates that those ugly nodules on my eyelids are cholestorol related. I also had a chest x-ray and an EKG (which was normal).

Tomorrow I go to the lab and get my blood work done, hence I can’t eat or drink for the next 12 hours. Then I go back for a follow-up on 9 June where she will reveal the state of my health. So we shall see. I don’t expect anything is terribly wrong, but I guess at my age I have to face up to the fact that I’m mortal and taking some precautions is in order. I imagine I will make some lifestyle changes too. I’m just too close to retirement not to be able to enjoy it.

So that’s the plan.

Oh, we kicked ass in darts last night, so it is on to round two of the playoffs Thursday against our arch rivals from the Bless U Pub. They beat us twice during the season, but we go in quite confident of victory.

Ain’t life grand?

Luck of the draw

I’ve been reminded that it is past time for an update. And this is it.

Last night we had the league doubles tournament for darts. The “A” division players were paired with us “B” division types, so it made for some good competition. I was fortunate enough to draw Petro as my partner, he’s the top rated “A” player.

We did great, when he was a little off, I filled in the gaps. But he is a tremendous player and we sailed through the winners bracket. And then things fell apart. Petro lost his cool over a bullshit call, and I started throwing like shit, and we wound up with second place. I’m not complaining, it was great fun and I had a lot of the “A” guys complimenting my game.

Tomorrow night we have the first round of league playoffs. We are playing the Alley Ratz from 3 Alley Pub. We beat them both times in league, but they have some good players and we can’t take them lightly. Looking forward to a good match.

So, does it sound like my life revolves around darts these days? That’s only because it’s true. Hey, there are a lot worse ways to spend your time in Itaewon.

I am finally going to break down and see a doctor next week. I’ve had some numbness in my left arm these past few days, and coupled with the blackout incident I’m guessing it may be a good idea to find out what’s up inside this rapidly aging body. I’ve just about let the ignorance is bliss attitude run its course I guess. I’m confident nothing is seriously wrong, but just in case I’ll get the physical. Worse case scenario I can stop worrying about the future!

Anyway, all is well. Still fat and relatively happy these days.

One year

Today is Children’s Day in Korea and my granddaughter Gracyn’s first birthday in America. I like that symetry.

Indulge me while I brag about the sweetest little girl with a big smile who loves the adventure of discovering the wonders that surround her. Don’t believe me? I have proof:

Happy Birthday, Gracyn!