One of the best parts, I think, is toward the end of the movie when Carter Chambers (played by Morgan Freeman) writes a letter to his buddy Edward Cole (played by Jack Nicholson). Here it is:
Carter: [in his letter to Edward] "Dear Edward, I've gone back and forth the last few days trying to decide whether or not I should even write this. In the end, I realized I would regret it if I didn't, so here it goes. I know the last time we saw each other, we weren't exactly hitting the sweetest notes---certain wasn't the way I wanted the trip to end. I suppose I'm responsible and for that, I'm sorry. But in all honestly, if I had the chance, I'd do it again. Virginia said I left a stranger and came back a husband; I owe that to you. There's no way I can repay you for all you've done for me, so rather than try, I'm just going to ask you to do something else for me---find the joy in your life. You once said you're not everyone. Well, that's true---you're certainly not everyone, but everyone is everyone. My pastor always says our lives are streams flowing into the same river towards whatever heaven lies in the mist beyond the falls. Find the joy in your life, Edward. My dear friend, close your eyes and let the waters take you home."
If you haven't already, you MUST see this movie. Here's the trailer...
Compiled by Miguel Arboleda, a Kobe, Japan writer, illustrator, and university lecturer who's been deeply involved with ultralight backpacking for 18 years now.
Tokyo's Kiyosumi Garden was established in 1878 by Yataro Iwasaki (岩崎 弥太郎), the founder of Mitsubishi, as a garden area for the enjoyment of his employees & entertainment of important guests. View entire 36-photo set here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wolffman/sets/72157633712075699/
How English is spoken in North America. On this amazing webpage by Rick Aschmann, you can zoom in on the large-scale dialect map & click on a U.S. state or Canadian province to listen to audio or video dialect samples for each location: http://aschmann.net/AmEng/
Once there was an old man who lived in a tiny village. Although poor, he was envied by all, because he owned a beautiful white horse. People offered fabulous prices for the horse, but the old man always refused. “This horse is a friend, not a possession,” he would respond.
One morning the horse was not in the stable. All the villagers said, “You old fool. We told you someone would steal that beautiful horse. You could at least have gotten the money. Now the horse is gone, and you’ve been cursed with misfortune.”
The old man responded, “Perhaps. All I know is that my horse is gone; the rest I do not know. Whether it be a curse or a blessing, I can’t say.”
After 15 days the horse returned. He hadn’t been stolen; he had run away into the forest. Not only had he returned, he had brought a dozen wild horses back with him. Once again the village people gathered around the old man and said, “You were right – what we thought was a curse was a blessing. Please forgive us.”
The old man responded, “Perhaps. Once again you’ve gone too far. How do you know if this is a blessing or a curse? Unless you can see the whole story, how can you judge?” But the people could only see the obvious. The old man now had twelve additional horses that could be broken and sold for a great deal of money.
The old man had a son, an only son. He began to work with the wild horses. Unfortunately, after just a few days, he fell from a horse and broke both his legs. Once again the villagers gathered around the old man and said, “You were right. The wild horses were not a blessing; they were a curse. Your only son has broken his legs and now in your old age you have no one to help you. You are poorer than ever.” But the old man said,“ Perhaps. Don’t go so far. Say only that my son broke his legs. We have only a fragment of the whole story.”
It so happened that a few weeks later the country went to war with a neighboring country. All the young men of the village were required to join the army. Only the son of the old man was excluded, because he had two broken legs. Once again the people gathered around, crying because there was little chance their sons would return. “You were right, old man. Your son’s accident was a blessing. Our sons are gone forever.”
The old man spoke again. “You people are always quick to jump to conclusions. Only God knows the final story.”
May 5, 2013 - Kasai Rinkai
Park on Children's Day
An absolutely magnificent Children's Day, a Japanese national holiday,
in Kasai Rinkai Park, overlooking Tokyo Bay...
Gary J. Wolff