Today, Shu Mei and I went to T’aichung, about 40 minutes drive from our home in Ch’ing-shui. We went to visit Shu Mei’s cousin. He is in the hospital, with colon cancer. The doctor gave him no more than six months to live. That was six months ago. He isn’t doing well. Sad, because he is a really good man.
If is wasn’t for him, Shu Mei’s father would probably a bit colder to me. It was Shu Mei’s cousin, the oldest of her cousins, that convinced her father that I would be good for Shu Mei. Also, he helped my family feel more at ease, when they met Shu Mei’s family back in January.
Regarding him, Shu Mei told me that he had had a difficult life. He was “forced” to marry a woman he didn’t love. When he was in college, in Taipei, he fell in love with a girl from the city. His grandfather would not allow him to marry her, believing that a city girl would not be a good wife. Also, his father had the same viewpoint, that a city girl would be just too much into social life to be a good wife. Therefore, the two of them found him another woman to marry, a country girl. Because he respected them, and because times were a bit different then, he married the woman they wanted him to marry.
I don’t know what happened to the city girl, but he never quite fell in love with the woman he married. He did have two children, boys, 18 and 20. Then, on January 9, 2002, his wife died. Even though she had multiple health problems, her death was unexpected. That left Shu Mei’s cousins to take care of the two boys on his own. He never complained about any of it. I hope that he pulls through this cancer, but it looks doubtful.
Since I’ve been here, I’ve seen more of the hospitals than I ever did the rest of my life, living in the US. Because Shu Mei’s doctor is at a hospital, I will undoubtedly go there many more times, as she has to see him periodically due to her pregnancy.
After the hospital, we ate at Kentucky Fried Chicken. They have a new barbecue chicken that is decent. Shu Mei got that and I tried a little. I ordered three breasts. I like the all the white meat they provide. In the US, they charge extra for all breasts. Strangely, the people here prefer wings and legs, which is alright with me as they don’t charge extra here for all breasts.
After KFC, we went to B&Q, a home improvement store. We were looking for an office chair. I wanted to buy one for Shu Mei, for Mother’s Day, tomorrow. She has been using one of the dining room chairs when she works on her computer. It is so sad, because I am sitting on my cushy office chair across the room, working on my computer. So, because of guilt, and just because I want her to feel better, I “demanded” that she let me buy her the office chair. I say “demanded” because Shu Mei always declines gifts I offer her, at first. She is so gracious!
We didn’t find a good office chair at B&Q, so we visited a couple of furniture stores. At the second one, we found a good one they had in front, on display. Shu Mei wanted to go inside, to look at the couches. So, we went in. They had some really good couches there. Very comfy! We compared three of the ones we liked the best. Shu Mei had me sit and lie on them, in various positions. I told her which one was my favorite.
I didn’t think she was really serious, until she asked me if we could buy it. Given our current financial situation, and Shu Mei’s stalwart approach to saving money, I was very surprised. Of course, I answered to the affirmative, as I am seldom one to turn down a comfy couch. So, we picked the color that we want and they should deliver it in 3 to 5 days. It was pretty cheap, too. Although it was only a little over $400, the quality was very good. The same kind of couch in the US would cost nearly double that.
After purchasing the couch and chair, we headed back to Ch’ing-shui. On the way home, Shu Mei got sick. She is now approaching her fourth month of pregnancy and she is still getting sick. This concerns me, as she it make her feel bad. Also, she is not gaining any weight. Her doctor said not to worry, as this is normal. However, it wasn’t that way with my first wife, when she was pregnant with my son, Cameron. In fact, she gained over 70 pounds during her pregnancy! (It was some kind of disease that she had which caused her to gain so much.)
Upon returning to home, Shu Mei went to the church, for a Relief Society meeting. She is the branch Relief Society president currently. She has asked to be released from this calling, because of her troubled pregnancy, but the Branch President hasn’t found a viable replacement for her yet. Actually, there is no replacement for Shu Mei…she is one of a kind!
While Shu Mei was at her meeting, I spent a few hours doing what I really like to do – sleeping. I haven’t had time to sleep in so long! I missed it. Shu Mei returned home after a few hours and woke me up. Then, I stayed up until 2 am, working on my website. I haven’t had much time to put it together and I want to get it going this weekend.
I was glad that I got to have some time to sleep. When I was young, I wanted no part of sleep. Now, I can’t get enough of it. As I write this, I can hear the sound of a light rain outside. I love the rain. It makes the air smell so fresh and wonderful. It was a great day, today. Maybe, just maybe, lazy days are here again! <fingers crossed>