Once when I was twenty two, I took a hot date from Oakland across the bay to a place called Tiburon, north of the Golden Gate. She was originally from Cần Thơ in the Mekong Delta.
I park my black Pontiac. We sit for a minute in that park on Paradise Drive where all the people is and she says something about feeling strange. I ask her what’s the matter? She can’t say or won’t say. After a minute she says, “It’s … so many White people.”
I mean, it was true. There was a deficit of non-token «People of Color», to be precise. I just never noticed till then. It blew my mind over time, as I thought back on it. Before then I guess I figured everybody went everywhere.
We crossed the Golden Gate Bridge into the Avenues. Had dinner at a Cantonese place in Chinatown — is it any other kind? — called Việt Hương if I’m not mistaken, but I could be. Ten years later I made my way to Cần Thơ. And that’s a long way from Tiburon.
Many things done come to pass. I have regrets, memories. A half-baked feeling of fullness for all that we was, is, will be.