This Bystander week ending has got to be one of the most eventful in my recent Stateside visits. Highlight, of course, was the four-day Summer Olympic Games in London as viewed on TV. Then there was my viewing on TV of the rare first-season showing of two outstanding movies of the year, my learning more about the latest high-tech terms which is a Eureka! experience for this low, no-tech “ignoramus” and my visiting and being again this time with my two remaining children, two remaining in the States with the passing away last year of one of three, and getting in touch with my recently immigrated son who is not allowed yet to come to the States, and all of this in this partially disabled year starting my nonegarian decade in the States. There, I have finally accepted and revealed my status!
The other weekend with my Texas resident nurse daughter Amelia and I went to Alabama to visit EWTN, the now internationally-viewed Catholic TV station which I now continue to view daily, noting the familiar interior of their chapel with the happily satisfied “have finally been and seen there!”
Well, last weekend, Amelia decided to drive us out again before I move over to San Diego and Los Angeles tomorrow. She intended for us to visit Waco 80 miles south of Mansfield, from where we were, to take a look at the site in Waco of the sensational mass suicide of the Branch Davidian there which was top news some years ago. As usual, I enjoyed the one and a half hour drive along the wide wide (not anymore “wild, wild”) Western expanse.
We had breakfast at a Czech Stop in West, Texas, yes, that was where early Czech immigrants had first settled down. There we had short sausages-baked in-a-bun and small open-faced Czech baked tarts called “kolaches”, and coffee, of course.
However, when we arrived in Waco, she noticed that the rough start of the road to the site was not worth the trouble, so we decided to drive on to the Mammoth site which, interestingly enough, was discovered in 1978, when two men stumbled upon a bone in a ravine near the Bosque River thus discovering a world that was presumably lost. Further archeological investigations proved that this bone belonged to a nursery herd of Pleistocene mammoths roaming eons ago before they were buried in a massive flood due to widespread weather warming changes.
The site featured a climate-controlled dig shelter and a suspended walkway that provided an overhead view of several specimens including a bull mammoth and a camel that lived approximately 68,000 years ago. It was an awe-inspiring exhibit for this archeologically-fascinated Bystander!
We then drove back to Arlington for lunch at a Chinese buffet, followed by a Batman movie where Amelia’s son Chris Anthony (“Coy-Coy” to family) and his wife Maria now three months pregnant with their first child and my first great grandchild, sex unknown yet as I write, joined us before Coy-Coy returned to San Antonio where his Air Force unit is presently assigned.
I am no fan of Batman movies, until I found out we were seeing the 2-star-rated “The Dark Knight Rises” that was recently premiering in the theater in Colorado when that tragic shooting by a cool lone gunman at the onrushing crowd preparing to see the widely advertised and popularized movie, resulted in the deaths then of 12 and injuries to 50 and was top news for days!
We learned from Wikipedia, the free social media encyclopedia, that the critically acclaimed and commercially successful 2012 super hero film is the third and final installment in the “Batman” film trilogy, and a sequel to the 2008 “Dark Knight” starring newcomer Christian Bale and legendary familiar stars Michael Caine, Morgan Freeman, and Anne Hathaway, among others. I marvel at how the movies today render familiar sci-fi characters, as well as of remembered fairy tales, myths and legends that we used to read about in earlier school-day years, come alive again as timely and relevant, not as dated and passé as we used to think about them.
Then last Sunday after morning Mass, on the way to the parking lot with Amelia, I carefully walked by the sidewalk site around the church where I had fallen back, landing on my behind near the edge after my hold slipped from a side pole of the wired fence, noticing with wry humor the significant chip off the side of the walk that could have but, was actually was not caused by my little accident after Mass Sunday before last.
We then proceeded to the famous Tokyo One restaurant in Addison, an hour’s drive from downtown Dallas, famous for its generous buffet, mainly of what I love, sushi and sashimi, among others. We were joined there for lunch by Amelia’s older child, Cherry Anne and her Texan husband Wade and Chris Anthony of course and had a warm family eat-together-with-talk time.
After the thank-you’s and see-you-later’s, we parted ways and returned to our respective homes. On the way, I remember we missed the TV coverage of the finals on the last day of the Olympics in London with no regrets, after enjoying our special family get-togethers the entire day. The recapped TV and newspaper reports on that would go on the entire week following.
That afternoon, Amelia and I went to see the three-star-rated “The Bourne Legacy”, again according to Wikipedia, the 2012 American action thriller film and the fourth installment in the “Bourne” film series, based on Robert Ludlum’s Jason Bourne novels. It was released last Aug. 8th in the Philippines and Singapore, and in the following successive days in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and the Czech Republic; here in the States and India on the 10th, and on the 13th in the UK.
It tells of the adventures of Aaron Cross, a member of Operation Outcome, one of the black ops programs of the Department of Defense deployed to Alaska for training assignment and later meeting with other scheduled secret-pill-powered Operation operatives on the same mission. Some highly eventful and dangerous days later, the Operation and its operatives around the world are successively terminated for some safety reason before Cross, teaming up with a female medical operative, farther ahead, both slowly weakening with the withdrawal of the power pills, travel in flight through crowded Manila pursued by a motorcycled agent assigned to eliminate them, until he is killed, Cross and his woman co-operative are driven into a river, are rescued by a Filipino boatman whom they bribe to take them to a ferry on which they departed to places unknown.
On tap for next week are other observations on the celebratory closing day of the Olympics in London, topped by the US’ overwhelming gold, silver and bronze medals totaling 107 over China’s 87, Russia’s 82, Great Britain’s 65 and Germany’s 44; of the current political scene here in the States with presidential elections a little over two and a half months away, the role of the new social media in all of these, and the birthdays and passing away of outstanding public figures.
Till next week then, as always, may God continue to keep and bless us, one and all!
Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.
Copyright 2012 INQUIRER.net. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate: c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94