Friday, January 21, 2011

Letter to Bill

Lee wrote on my Facebook page "didn't I have any witnesses?" Lee was my student at the time, though the University wasn't in session August 4th... so maybe she wasn't around. I was teaching that summer at the Peoria Art Guild.

I wrote to Bill, the only living witness.

Hi Bill,

How are you doing these days? The last I heard from you was that you had a bad cold. Hope that is long gone.

Do you remember that you and Paula were witnesses to our marriage at a justice of the peace. The reason I ask is I'm having a little trouble certifying that it actually happened... 41 years ago, and wanted to know if you remembered it. It was probably more eventful to you than me, so I understand if you don't remember. Afterwards we went to a hotel bar for a drink.


We'll wait and see if he replies. My guess is that he won't remember. He's had a tough life, and I don't think our ten minutes at the justice of the peace meant much to him. I don't even remember it. I remember the somewhat shady hotel bar... how it was dark, and we were probably the only people there... and I had a gin and tonic.

A week before, I called my parents and said, "if I were to get married, would you like me to tell you first?" My mom answered in the affirmative. So I said, "ok, I'm going to get married." The next weekend I called (calls were cheaper during the weekend) and said, "mom, I got married." And she said, "why didn't you tell me you were going to do that." "Mom, I did tell you."

Unfortunately, my mom is not able to confirm or deny this story. And even if she was alive, she probably wouldn't remember.

So now it is waiting time. Wait for the certified marriage license. Wait for the email from Bill.

The next two days I'm going to be holed up in a temple learning about karma, which is going to be discussed under the guise of the Pali word, kamma, because we don't have as many preconceptions about that. I'm excited to learn more about this important component of Buddhist action, though I'm not looking forward to the cold floor of the zendo.

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Xiushan said, "What can you do about the world?" Dizang said, "What do you call the world?"