Sunday afternoon


If it weren’t for the rain, I wouldn’t have remembered the incident.

Being just a kid, I was home-bound by torrential rain. No matter how hard I tried, the adults in the house would not let me go out and play. My tantrum perhaps lasted for hours with ending compromise: I got taken to see “the Hunchback of Notre Dame” played by Anthony Quinn.

Esmeralda and her plot-twisting escape.

I wish my life had been that of the hunchback i.e. just ring the bell when it’s time and stay in.

Even on rainy Sunday Afternoons.

No Esmeralda. No trouble. But troubles seem to find me out.

I ran out to the street, saw all sorts of things: burning monk in 1963, Tet 68 street battle, 1975 last chopper, 1979 Three Mile Island. A long way from a quiet home-bound Sunday Afternoon.

On one of the family’ trips, I was up in a Dalat villa, sneaking out the balcony for a smoke, cause I saw it on Bonjour Tristesse. I knew then as I know now the face of existential loneliness.

Jean Paul Belmondo, Johnny Holiday and Alain Delon.

Those larger-than-life figures of French cinema.

Than music of the 60’s arrived (the British Invasion caught a ride on the chopper to be in Saigon as well). I had imprints of “He ain’t heavy, he is my brother” piling on top of “Et Pourtant” by Charles Aznavour.

Those Sunday Afternoons. Home-bound. Taking it all in.

By the time I got to the States, I am a mix bag and a mix  package: French, Vietnamese and English all-in-one.

Then I caught on with Chicago’s “Saturday in the Park“, or America’s “Lonely People”.

Finally, the day the music dies. Lennon got shot in the park.

Princess Diana got car crashed (You live your life like a candle in the wind).

Maria Carey went on living “without you” since she “can’t give anymore”.

Later on, more tragedies piling on top of one another, with “tears in heaven” and “wake me when September ends”.

I like Torn. The sound is very contemporary and cool.

We are still eager for that next tune. Next hit.

After all, it’s only a Sunday Afternoon, homebound. In search of something to pass the time.

Kid at heart.

Look not for trouble. But troubles always manage to seek me out. Bonjour Tristesse.

Might as well getting used to the unusual. Whose life is “normal” anyway. It would be boring to tears, ringing the bell when it’s time. Not sure the guy was born that hunch a back, or it’s an occupational hazard.

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