We hosted my dad and two of my siblings at our house over the Christmas holiday. Many memories were made over the short time we spent together, but what I may remember most is my dad, not always the sharer of experiences in his past, opening up on Christmas night to share some of the stories of his past. I couldn’t waste the chance to write this one down.

My dad started college in January at a no-name school in a small town. This was a month after he arrived in the United States, mind you, fresh off the boat, as they say. My mom, an American, was a young freshman from the largest city within a four hour drive and was probably unexposed to much in the world at that time, but was smart enough to get herself to college. One cold Sunday night in February, a month into my dad’s American dream, my dad’s roommates ended up calling around to various girls’ dorm rooms seeing if they could score an invite to come over. One of his American roommates made the pitch that his roommate was from Europe and these young women ate it up. They had to meet the foreigner. The guys came over and my dad and mom ended up meeting for the first time, sat together, and shared a conversation that Sunday evening.  Of course, as fate would have it, they ran into each other that coming week on campus, my dad asked her out, and the rest is history, as they say. By August of 1978 they were married and by the following July I was born, in that same small town, to a young happy couple who had just completed their associates degree (back when that meant something) and were ready to move on to bigger and better adventures together.

I know I’m not including a lot of details here, but with this basic outline, I can fill in the rest. I have never returned to that small town, for I feel no connection to it, but I feel that perhaps one day I will return, walk the campus where it started for my parents, where my origins began.