When I left to come to the Philippines

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The drive seemed long and everyone was quiet. Inside I was shaking. Nervous. My mind running around all the things I thought I should do or had to do and what would I find when I landed. I just sat and watched the scenery pass as it was going to be the last time I ever saw what had always been my home. You try to drink it in and keep it but of course, that’s not how your brains work is it.

At the airport, we found a parking place in the familiar short-term lot and we all got out, no one saying a word. I was a little excited, checking the time and my flight to be sure I will get onboard before it leaves. Tickets, passport, cash in a little bag around my neck.

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Carried my own bags and the three boxes which contained everything I would have with me from home on one of those little trolley things which were free at the Seattle airport. Inside to baggage check-in and got a boarding pass. At that time visitors were still allowed into the boarding areas and my ex-wife and two sons walked with me, some awkward conversation began from my sons as I recall, I think all they were trying to say really was “Pop, how can you really be leaving us? This will all go away and you’ll be back, right? Pop we love you, man.” I just said it out loud, “I love you each more than anything. I hope you will come to understand that this is something I really need and just have to do.”

We hugged. Tight lingering hugs as if to say I will never let you go.

Then we let each other go.

I stepped into the boarding ramp and walked onto the plane, finding my little seat that would be my torture for the next 16 hours to Tokyo. Looking out the window wondering if they would stand there and watch the plane take off like they did when they were kids or if they would hurry back to the life that had almost done me in with its senselessness and empty promises. I later found out they simply left and drove back to what had been our home for 27 years.

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David Wasson

David Wasson, an award winning Seattle chef and cooking instructor, left his successful career in 2008 to retire in the Philippines, where he expected to lead a peaceful and quiet existence. After moving to Mindanao (which is considered dangerous even by Filipino standards), He was invited to a “Thanksgiving” celebration at Purok Garciaville. He was struck by the weight of the children, and in speaking with the Barangay Health Worker, He began to see some serious problems that are not always so obvious.

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George WorshamMichael Eckert srmikeJohn ReyesKarim Lalani Recent comment authors
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Karim Lalani
Karim Lalani


There is book in you yearning to be born. Thank you for a riveting post.

John Reyes
John Reyes

Already I sense a poignant story unfolding. Though, so many dots still need connecting that could prove me wrong, I am struck by the utter selfishness and self-absorption displayed without regard for the feelings of those left behind.


Looking forward to next installment. I’ll assume that the kids left behind were adults and in good condition.

Michael Eckert sr

I spent 20 days in the Philippines and I loved every moment there. I will be back and I will find a way to be able to live there and still draw my disability. And I will be say goodbye to my one son who is 47 so if he every wants to come my why, that would be great. The Philippines is calling for me.

George Worsham
George Worsham

There are many happy days in the future.


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