A curious look from a stranger, when I say something that is not quite understood, and the person hearing saysWhat just happened here?” and I reply, “It’s just like something out of a Harry Potter movie.”

A most memorable moment from a lady friend who said, ” I wasn’t really that interested in you until I read your writing.” Then, the questions never stopped.

When I tripped and fell on the Appalachian Trail, stunned and disoriented, I tried to gather myself and stand up; My wonderful dog Aja notices I fell, was hurt, then rushes to my side,( sticking like glue) as I lay sprawled out like a spilled sack of potatoes. She whimpers as if saying ( if she could talk ), “What happened, I need you, please stand up.”

A painful one, yet I hold on to it. The fact that I was too young to be a father to my daughter, Lauren. I could barely take care of myself let alone take care of another. Many years brought controversy and difficulty, and as I tried to bring her into my life, seems circumstances and others involved would not allow it. Later, my daughter grew and decided to let me in, for reasons as of yet, that are only known to her. But I am so thankful.

More pain, the missing of every dog I’ve ever had in my life, that I had to put in the ground. The bittersweet thoughts of the dog we currently own ( Aja), the realization that either my death or hers will separate us. I hope that God chooses to gather them all together and make them a gift in my heaven. Buddy, Missy, Chook, Falcon, Dolly, Myrtle, Rupert, Maddie, Princess Aja ( still alive), and others.

One particular Saturday, early afternoon, and the original ‘King Kong’ was playing on a little black-and-white TV in my bedroom. I was so happy.

Remembering every dog that has ever wagged its tail and picked up a toy, ready to play. And the looks a dog can give you when you’ve given them something really good to eat, and they smack their lips and say ” Thank you.”

The remembrance of a ‘desired love that was never meant to be.’ Somehow, I knew it would never work out, but I remember a particular night; a snowstorm came and stranded us. I knew that we would have a special time together, but once the sun came up and the snow was gone, I would no longer have her undivided attention. I knew that everything else that was going on in our lives would return and destroy what we had.

A pre-marriage conversation with my soon-to-be wife, concerning our age difference. I knew there would be major challenges, as she is Japanese and I am American. Our age difference was/is 19 years. I once said to her “I am older older and will probably pass away before you, and you will still have a life to life, how do you feel about that?”… She responded quite quickly, “I will take care of you.” This was enough for me.

A really beautiful one. It seems God understood the circumstances revolving around my daughter, Lauren. I prayed for over twenty years for the ‘birth gift’ of a son. God granted my prayers in the birth of a wonderful boy we named, Ari’el *Shou (* means to ‘soar’ in Japanese) I was so thankful to God, I wanted to honor Him by giving my son a special name … Ari’el is an ancient name for Israel, ‘Ari’ means Lion, El is one of God’s names, so, we have Ari’el, The Lion of God. His naming was my way of saying Thank You to God, and as it turns out, without any pressure from me, and my son allowing me to teach him, he understands the struggle between Good and Evil and has made a profession of faith, it happened at a very young age.

Also about Ari’el, upon close examination of his ears, it can clearly be seen that he has one ear like his father and one ear like his mother. PERFECT!

All for now, maybe I will pick this up again later. I am Frankie The Earthman.

Sometimes a familiar path becomes blocked … The Appalachin Trail, Va.

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