Now I had to put up one last set of photos about America. We spent a wonderful afternoon with my good friend Maco, his wife and their lovely daughter. He was a wonderful host as he grilled up some hamburgers and brots and we had wine and beer and yes even a little bit of pie. It was kind of fun because we were celebrating the NEW YEAR for Cambodia and Thailand which is on the same day, but we were doing it American style.
Later in the afternoon we were visited by my close friend Nung and his family. Now Nung is Thai, but lives just down the block from Maco so it was great that they could slip over before they headed to the Thai temple to celebrate.
Even Vietnam was represented as Nhu and Dave came along with us to round out the South East Asian experience.
It was great seeing everyone. Nung's brother, Bui, was one of my closest friends when I lived in Denver. Bui was the kind of guy who you didn't call on the phone and chat with, he was the kind of guy who just showed up at my house, let himself in, and started making noodles for himself, me, and anyone else he'd invited over to my place. He was happiest with a couple of beers in him and may have been one of the most honest men I was ever around. In truth Bui really didn't take care of himself so much, but he always was trying to help others. He passed away this last year from cancer and it was not surprising that all of the soccer players who he'd devoted his time to for years came to his funeral. He was the kind of guy who had patience in a sports world consumed with immediate results, Bui offered his athletes a kind word, and an opportunity to work at it again and again. Losing Bui was very hard on everyone who knew him. He is missed, and especially in a gathering like this where there was food and ice cold beer, I could almost hear his laughter.
This day was another reminder to me of the hardest part of living in Thailand, being away fro the friends I spent my time with in Denver. I was blessed with a great group of friends, and sadly a lot of them I didn't find the time to go see. I wish I had more days to track more of them down.
Well, it's time to get back to my life in Thailand. Still, this was a great trip and one I will not soon be forgetting.