Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Taiwan thoughts--7 minutes!

So a little while ago I said I would try to write something about Taiwan every week.... :)  Well, maybe at least every month.  I just don't want to forget.  Here's a little blurb, and to make it interesting (or at least not as time-consuming as other posts), I'm timing myself for five minutes and will try my very best to not stop typing AT ALL.  The computer version of free-writing.

read set GO:

When we were in our second term in Taiwan (5 years old to 9), we lived in Taipei in the same apartment.  This is particularly significant because it's the longest time I've ever spent in one house/apt.  Most of my memories are of Taipei because of this.

One night we had pizza (special!) and a missionary friend who ministered to people on the streets and recovering from drugs, alcoholism, etc. came over with a friend because they were in the neighborhood.  And actually, I think one of them had to use the bathroom, and there were none that were free and clean nearby.  It's not that Taiwan has bad sanitation, you just generally have to pay for public restrooms.

So I met Eddie, the friend she was with.  He was very kind and chatted with us as we kids got ready for bed.  The next time I heard of him was when he sent us beautiful bells at Christmas to decorate our tree.  I have no idea why he remembered us, but I loved the bells and thought even more of him.

The next time I saw him was in the hospital, and he was covered in purple welts.  He was in the final stages of HIV AIDS and died a few weeks later.  Eddie's whole face was actually blue and purple...I have no idea if that is common for AIDS or if it was just the light or my faulty little girl memory, but I remember looking at his face and trying not to stare as my Dad and he talked in Mandarin.  

Later I asked how he got AIDS, and Dad said that he had led a party lifestyle, and used to be a somewhat famous singer at nightclubs.  Or something like that.  Now it's been so long that I don't really remember his face, I just remember the color of the disease, the bruises, whatever they were.  And when I think of him, the most outstanding quality is a gentle kindness that I intuitively trusted.  and I've always been chary about trust.

We still hang the Eddie's bells.

ok, fine, that was seven minutes.  But yes!  I think I can actually do seven minutes a week.  
We'll see.

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