third time I have entered the November novel writing competition, NaNoWrMo
|Jake Cosmos Aller word count:
Unit 450 box 63
APO AP 96206
Timeless Love - A novel
Jake Cosmos Aller
Sam Adams was turning 95. He was also celebrating his 70th wedding anniversary. Preparation for the anniversary, he recorded a video how is life together with his wife Maria Lee. Their love story was unique and would make a great movie Sam thought. The video would be I draft of their life story so to speak, any help that he could turn into movie.
He called together his niece, and his lawyer, and told them he prepared the video his life story, and wanted it to be played both at the wedding anniversary and at the funeral before he felt his time was coming to an end. He also revised his will, and wanted his life story to be written into a movie after he died. He discussed the pending changes to his will and his wishes for the funeral. He told them both that he felt that they needed to be ready to plan the funeral. That night he died peacefully. the video was played at the funeral.
Hello my name is Sam Adams, and if you are viewing this, I am no longer here among the living and that is okay. I've had a long and eventful life. The central mystery of my life his how I met the love of my life, Maria Lee. As some of you know, I literally married the girl of my dreams. But what you may not know is that Maria and I have been soul mates for over 5,000 years and up until this life, our love story always ended up badly as we were from different social classes. She was the daughter of the king or rich family and I was the son of a working class family. Our love was forbidden by the rules of the time.
twenty years ago to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary, we went to a past life analyst and through hypnosis relieved our past lives. we recorded our recollections which I wrote down at the time and posted on my blog, the world according to cosmos. Some of you may have seen it.
Our love story in this life began in 1974 when I had the first dream.
The dreams started when I was a was a senior at Berkeley high school in 1974, around my wife’s birthday in late May, perhaps. About a month before I graduated, I fell asleep in a physics class after lunch and had the first dream: I had smoked a joint during lunch as I had just discovered the joy of weed. The stoners hung out at the steps smoking weed during lunch. It was Berkeley in the early 70’s and weed was everywhere it seemed.
The happiest moment of my life occurred at 5:30 pm on Wednesday August 26, 1982 on a sidewalk outside of Red Cloud Base in Euijonbu, South Korea. At that moment, stepping of the bus in front of me was the girl of my dreams. She walked out of my dreams, off the bus and into my life. I often think of my life as Pre-Angela, and Post Angela and I felt that my life had truly begun the moment I met my Soul Mate.
It all started May 18, 1974 at 1 pm in Professor Harvey’s physics class at Berkeley High School. I had gone out side to the steps where the stoners hung out. I had just become a stoner myself and smoked dope frequently during lunch. It seemed that half my class was stoned after lunch. The teachers did not seem to either notice or care that much as the stoned students were usually much mellower to deal with than the non-stoned students and mainly of the teachers smoked the weed themselves. Weed was everywhere it seemed in the 70’s. Many students smoked weed in Provo park across from the school and in front of the Police Station. The police wisely decided that they had better things to than busting high school and college students smoking weed and drinking beer in the park. The only time they ever intervened was if people got too rowdy or if there were too many black students smoking weed there. White students were generally left alone as well their parents were politically connected and could cause problems for the police who were almost all white back then.
I came to class and promptly fell asleep. It was a hot day and there was no air condictioning in the old building. Few buildings in Berkeley had air conditioning back then. Professor Harvey was going on and on and I was soon zonked out, snoring away much to the amusement of my class mates.
I was the student body class president, and well celebrated across the campus for being just an unique person. I was lively, vivacious, friendly, talked to everyone, and was a natural born politician and weird in a good way. I told many people the story of the dream after it all went down. No one really believed me. It was a great story though.
Here’s what happened. I found myself asleep in bed in a strange room. An Asian women in her 20 ties was standing next to my bed. She stared at me, smiled and say something to me in a weird language. All I could make out was the word Aka. She continued to stare at me and I stared at her. I was blown away. She was the most alluring, most beautiful wome I had ever met. She was tall for an Asian women, 5 feet 6 inches. She was slender but had nice boobs and a fantastic ass. And long black hair and intense black eyes. She continued to speak to me. Then she disappeared beaming out of the dream. I fell to the ground yelling
“Who are you?” and came back to the class. Everyone was laughing including the professor. The professor said,
“Brother Aller, I would advise you to drink some coffee before coming to my class. I could sent you to the principle but that stunt was amusing and woke us all up. Are you okay? Can we proceed with the lecture?”
I nodded and he continued his lecture on the reason why light is both a particle and a wave. For some reason I always remember that lecture.
After class I told my best friend, Robert Sicular, who was the star actor at BHS and later become a successful stage actor about the dream. I asked him what it all meant.
“well to quote, Mr. natural, it don’t mean shit. I don’t know man. Must have been some powerful assed weed you smoked during lunch. Do you have any left? ‘
“Nope. Claude and I smoked it all up.”
I went to Robert’s house and told his parents, Bob and Ruth about the dream. I got along very well with them, and they felt that I was like Robert’s brother from another mother as they say now a days.
I hung out there almost every afternoon. They always had a beer and some weed and encouraged us to sit around and talk with them. He was a communist real estate agent and she was a buddhist nun.
I told them the dream and that I was destined to meet and marry her. Bob said,
“Could just be the weed speaking you know.”
“ I believe you. I believe in dreams. You are fated to have an interesting life and I know that you will meet her and marry her. That is your kismet, your fate.”
That night my other best friend, Matt Jacobson came over and we played pool as we usually did after school. My father had a pool table and my parents liked Matt and my other friend Mark, who came over almost every evening to play pool and talk shit as we called it back in the day.
I told them about the dream. I also told them that I knew that I would meet her some day and that was the women I was destined to marry.
I started having that dream on a monthly basis. Usually near the end of the month and almost always first thing in the morning. The dream was always the same. She would repeat the word Aka which I later learned was the Korean word for baby and became her pet name for me once we met. The rest of the conversation I could not understand at all. I did not know it until many years later that it was in Korean.
I was always struck speechless and could only mutter the words,
“Who are you? Where are you? When will we meet?”
She would smile at me, with love in her eyes and then beam away.
This continued for many years. The dream complicated my love life. I was awkward around women, as I was a bit of nerd and lacked social graces. I also was an intense person and that might have scared people from getting involved with me. I was kind of like the character in the movie, “40 Year Old Virgin”.
Because of the dream, I could not see myself getting involved with anyone else because I knew I was fated to be with her some day. I had a number of girl friends, but no lovers until my last year in college.
One day in late May, about a week before I graduated I had been accepted into the Peace Corps. I had a deadline to respond whether I would accept the proposed assignment and I had a choice going to Korea as a TB control worker in August or to Thailand as an ESL teacher in a rural school in October. I was leaning towards Korea. I had taken Japanese and Chinese history classes in college and I was fascinated with the region and I was curious about Korea. And besides I was ready to get going.
On May 18, 1979 at 5:30 I had a slightly different dream. In the dream, she told me when I asked where she was, “Seoul, Korea.” And smiled at me. And disappeared.
I told my housemates, Sara, Sharon, Roy and Kevin about the dream. They all knew that I had been having this recurring dream over the years. Sara said,
“Well seems like you need to go to Korea to meet her. I believe you and believe that you are fated to meet her.”
“Well perhaps so but we will still get married at age 50.”
That was a standard joke between us. We both felt that we were best friends but she did not want to have a romantic relationship with me but I did. We had been living together for almost three years at this point and in a few weeks we would all be moving on as we were moving out at the end of the month. Sara, Kevin and I were all graduating. Sharon and Roy had another year to go. Sharon never came back after being raped in her apartment after she moved out. Roy dropped out of college as his parents could not afford the tuition any more.
Therefore, I went to Korea and joined the Peace Corps. During my two years in the Peace Corps, I met a number of Korean women, but I knew that none of them was the one for me. I kept looking and looking for the girl in the Dream.
I searched for her and several times I saw someone in the distant that might have been her but I never met her.
After the Peace Corps I taught ESL to Koreans who were serving in the US army to fulfill their mandatory military duty (KATUSAS). I also taught BSEP )basic skills to military people. In those days the military was taking in high school drop outs and many of the enlisted people had sub-par reading and math skills. My job was to get them to read and do math at the 8th grade level.
One winter while I was in the Peace Corps I went to Taiwan on a personal visit. I met a famous fortuneteller who made three predictions – I would marry an Asian women, I would marry when I was 27 and I would become a diplomat. All three predictions turned out to be true.
After the Peace Corps I took a job in Korea and decided that I would give it one more year. If I did not meet her by then I would return to Seattle to go to Graduate school at the University of Washington in Korean studies. I was teaching English and basic skills for enlisted personnel at various US army bases in South Korea. I moved about the entire country. I was lonely, dissatisfied, and .felt that i was wasting my time. I kept having the dream though.
I was also drinking too much and hanging out at bars. I liked to go to the bars and chat up the waitreses and practice my Korean. They were amused by that and I learned a lot of “street Korean” from them and once a month or so I would take one of them to her room and have sex.
One day I was starting to work for a new contractor, Central Texas College. My previous contractor has lost the contract and I was unemployed for a month and broke as hell. I had about 100 dollars in the bank. I was teaching ESL on the side here and there and making some extra money which went for booze and women so I was always broke.
one day I had to tell my employer that I was quitting and returning to the States to go to graduate school. that morning I had the final dream.
She came to me again, but this time, I understood her Korean. She said, "Don't worry, we will be together soon and once we are together we will together forever. I have been waiting since our last life together. And now I found you.”
"걱정하지 마십시오. 우리는 곧 함께있을 것이며 우리가 함께 있으면 영원히 함께 할 것입니다. 나는 마지막 생애 이후로 기다리고 있습니다. 그리고 지금 당신을 찾았습니다."
"geogjeonghaji masibsio. ulineun god hamkkeiss-eul geos-imyeo uliga hamkke iss-eumyeon yeong-wonhi hamkke hal geos-ibnida. naneun majimag saeng-ae ihulo gidaligo issseubnida. geuligo jigeum dangsin-eul chaj-assseubnida."
That night, I got off the bus in front of Camp Red Cloud where I was teaching. Getting off the bus in front of me was the girl in the dream! I was struck speechless which was an unusual experience for me as I was usually a talkative, extroverted sort of person.
She went into the base with a fellow teacher that I knew. I bumped into them after his class and introduced myself. She gave me her phone number and we arranged to meet over the weekend. I gave her a lame excuse that he wanted to meet someone to practice his Korean and he could help her with her English. She spoke English pretty good as she was an English Education major at Sungsil Woman’s university and was a senior. She was 23 years old and I was 27 years old. I was born in the year of the goat and she was born in the year of the pig. According to fortune tellers we had a perfect astrological chart and were soul mates. In any event it was love at first sight for both of us, or as Koreans say
On Wednesday August 26, 1982 I got on a military bus on Camp Casey near where I lived in Tongduchon in a rented room. I was living very basically those days out of a suite case in a rented room as my employer kept sending me all over the country. I must have moved at least ten times that year.
I was talking with a fellow BSEP teacher about graduate school. We were both quiting soon to go back to the States for graduate school. I was going to study Korean studies at the University of Washington, and Mark was going to study Public Admistration at the University of Okalholma. He had started studying at Youngsan and was transferring to the main campus so he could study full time. He highly recommend that I study for a MPA degree as he knew that I was waiting to pass the foreign service test.
I got off the bus and the girl in the dream walked off the bus, out of my dreams and into my life. It was the moment I was waiting for all my life. I had been dreaming of that moment for six and one half years. And here she was.
I was struck speechless. I stared at her and she stared at me. And there was an instant connection, love at first sight for both of us. She was with another fellow teacher, Jim. Jim introduced us. They were going to see a movie and I told them I would meet them at the caferia at 8:30.
The class went by in a blur. I was still stunned that I had met her. I came up with a lame excuse that I wanted an language partner and she could help me with my Korean and I could help her with her English.
We met up. I had a cup of coffee and a burger. She had a burger too. Jeff excused himself and said it was nice meeting her. And left us.
We talked about her life and my life. Then I proposed that we meet up on Friday morning for a hike and further talks. I was off on Friday.
I told her that I was teaching MTWTH nights only and would be teaching some day time classes the following month but for now my days were pretty wide open until 5 pm when I had to leave for my evening classes.
She agreed to meet me on Friday at 9 am for breakfast and then we would go for a hike in a mountain park near by that I had not been to and neither had she.
That night I called my friend Robert and told him that I had met the girl in the dream. He was stunned. I told him that I knew it was her.
The next day I wrote to the University of Washington and asked for a one year deferral of admission as something had come up that required me to stay in Korea for one more year.
The next night she was waiting for me at the army base where I was to teach a class. She told me that she had to see me as she had something to tell me. I signed her on to the base and left her at the library to study. She was a college senior she told me. We went out for coffee after class. She told me she was madly in love with me and that I was the man for her. I told her not to worry as I felt the same.
I wrote my parents telling them that I was postponing graduate school for one more year. And had informed the University.
That night, Thrusday August 27th was the second happiest day of my life.
She was waiting for me at the gate. She said that she had to talk to me. I told her I would sign her on the base and meet her at the library about 8 pm. She could study for an hour or so.
I dismissed my class early about 8 pm. I went to the library and found her there. I looked at her and she looked at me and smiled at me.
We went downtown to a classical music coffee shop. They were very popular in those days. They offered good coffee and classical music per request. I requested some Bach. And we drank two cups of coffee.
She told me that she was madly in love with me. She told me that she knew I was the man for her and she had to be with me.
I told her that I felt the same way.
We talked futher about her life and my life so far. Her English was far better than my Korean so we mostly talked in English. She was a senior at Sungmyeong Woman’s University majoring in English Education. But she wanted to work for a corporation rather than become a high school English teacher. She was also going to start a graduate degree at Seoul University working on a MBA degree in a new program that was taught in English.
I told her that I had been accepted to go to the University of Washington for a MA degree in Korea studies but would start that in about a year. I would be teaching for CTC for a few months but wanted to find another teaching job somewhere in Korea as I was tired of teaching on base and the pay was not very good.
I told her that perhaps she could come to Seattle with me and study there. She looked at me and said that she would love that.
On Friday, Saturday and Sunday we meet each day and went for long walk in the mountains near the base and had breakfast, and dinner together. She made me kimpop (Korean sushi rolls) every day.
On Sunday night in the same coffee shop, I proposed to her. Or she proposed to me. Or we did it together. In any event we agreed that we would do the formal paperwork through the embassy on Friday October 29th, 1982.
We started meeting almost every day for the next month. Usually late in the day before my evening classes and all day Saturday and Sunday. We did a lot of walking about here and there and talked endlessly as we both found the other to be fascinating.
We were extremely different in our opinions. Opposites attract they say and boy did they. She was a bit radical in her thinking, later became very conservative politically. I was moderately progressive and still am.
I called up my best friend, Robert and Matt and told them that I had met the girl in the dream and was going to marry her. They were concerned that I was meeting a con artist because they could not believe that the dream could be true. Later when they met Maria they believed in the miracle of the dream.
That weekend we met Saturday and Sunday and hung out all day. On Sunday, we went for a hike in the woods. I proposed to her that night three days after we had met, but for me it felt that we had met 8 years ago, I had been waiting all my life for her to walk out of my dreams, and into my life and here, she was.
We had a delightful long walk in the woods and even saw a woodpecker. She told me that seeing the bird was supposed to be good luck.
We married two months later after a Buddhist priest told her Mother that our astrological match was a perfect fit. Her mother did not want her to marry a foreigner. One day about a month after we had met, she invited me to meet her parents, but she did not tell them I was a foreigner. I brought a bottle of Jack Daniels for my Father-in-Law and Uncle in law and drank the entire bottle with him. He approved of me but my Mother-in-Law still had reservations. After the Buddhist Priests told her it was a perfect astrological combination, she agreed and we planned on getting married. as she put it, “who am I to go against the will of heaven?”
We got married one month after I met her.
A few weeks after we were legally married, her parents allowed me to start spending the night with Angela pending our moving to the Korean Army School where I would hold our formal marriage. As part of the job, we received an apartment on base. We would be the first international couple to get married at the Korean army school.
Our first night together we jumped the gun and made sweat passionate love. It was her first time and well I do not know how many it was for me but it was the best I ever could have had because it was with the love of my life.
And so we began our sex life.
It quickly became apparent that we had a difference in our basic approach to sex. I was highly sexed and she was not. My biggest problem was that I had a hard time talking about sex with her and so did she. It took years before we were finally able to begin to talk about sex – what we wanted, what we liked and what we did not like. And even more years before we finally started having the sex that both of us needed and wanted.
This is still a work in progress, but sex is getting better and better as is our communication about sex.
Her mother was mad that we had jumped the gun but I was not. I needed her and she needed me and that was that.
A number of years ago, Maria and I had a frank talk about her Mother just before she passed on from this life. Maria had a difficult relationship with her Mother as many daughters had. The following story shocked my wife. She recalled her growing up with her mother who told her many times that she should have killed her when she was a baby. Her mother hated her from birth. She said that Maria was a crying baby and she could not get any sleep for the first two years of her birth as Maria was always crying. She said that Maria was so ugly a child that she was ashamed to be seen with her. She told her to never call her Mom in public and Maria often hid in her room when people came over because she felt that she was indeed ugly. When she was in junior high school, she went to a class trip to the Dongdaemoon ice skating ring dressed in pants etc. Her classmates told her that she was a pretty girl, and during college she dated a medical student. Her mother continued to say that she was ugly to her face. She said that she thought that her boy friend was deluded and she was ugly. She also told her that I was ugly, but my brother Roger was handsome.
She did not understand why Maria liked me. It was love at first sight for both of us and her Mother never experienced love in her life. She was extremely jealous of the love between Maria and I from the first time we met. She had a typical arranged marriage complicated by the war that separated her from her family and she was the youngest of 11 children. Her husband also was a North Korean refugee and was the fifth child. Neither her father nor mother had ever seen their relatives since the war except for her husband’s father who made it to the South and her husband’s older bother who had also made it to the South. In any event, her mother blamed Maria for her father-in-law’s abusive behavior towards her after she was born. Her father-in-law was angry that she had given birth to a girl and not a second son. And he was annoyed that Maria was a crying baby. and in those days of male preference for children, sometimes parents killed off their daughters secretly and no one made an issue since child deaths were so common in the chaos right after the war.
Her mother hated her from birth, thought that she was an ugly cry baby, stubborn, and selfish. And mean. She did not want to spend money on her going to college. And of course she hated her for marrying me and not marrying the medical student that she had “selected” for Maria. She thought Maria was making a huge mistake marrying a foreigner.. And later she blamed Maria later for costing her money by “forcing her to sell the Sooyori property where Maria and grown up and and some other property. Her parents like a lot of Korean families of her social class had a number of rental properties and lived off their rental income as well as her Father’s business. He ran a makalli factory (traditional Korea rice wine) , had a bus company, and owned a couple of hotels. He was moderately wealthy by Korean standards but certainly not of the elite. Although his family was part of the famous Kyongju Lee clan - distant relatives of the last Kings of Korea. In fact, in the entire history of the Kyongju Lee clan, only two members of the clan and ever married a foreigner, the first President of Korea, Shgymun Rhee who married an Austrian woman and Maria who married me.
Maria’s mother was always complaining that she did not treat her brothers or her with love and devotion, instead spending all of her love on me. She was jealous of our love. And she resented Maria for becoming successful as an adult while her sons had turned out to be failures.
When we came back to Korea to help her deal with cancer, she hated us being here. She did not want us to return to Korea permanently, thought we should stay in the U.S. and visit once a year at most for a few weeks. She thought that Maria was plotting to take over property that did not belong to her, and hated her for demanding her fair share of the family properties. Finally she resented the fact that she needed her help in going to doctors etc.
A very complicated family story. I always thought that this would make a very good novel, or movie or K Drama. Food for a short story or two about Korean family dynamics. Our story would make a great K Drama complete with a villainous mother figure, who hated her ugly daughter from birth because she was a ugly crying baby. And the mother continues to hate her rebellious daughter who marries a foreigner and despises her mother. And became the first Korean born female to become an US Army office to be stationed in Korea. And her son in law becomes a diplomat.
Well, I finished the story and it is ready to go. I’ve asked the estate to publish it on line and submit it as a movie. It is called Timeless Love and I hope you will see it soon.
We had grown up in very different circumstances, countries and cultures. We had very different personalities and both were strong willed, opinionated, and stubborn and proud. Neither of took criticism well, and both tended to view the world in very personal terms.
And boy did we have different personalities. I was outgoing, the life of the party, optimistic, happy go lucky, unrealistic, a big dreamer, a big story teller, but I lacked discipline and tended to start projects but have a hard time finishing them and I wanted so much to be liked that I forgave people too easily and he was too nice to the point that people took advantage of me.
They say that opposites attract but it is hard to live with people who are so different. I often thought that if we had taken one of these on=line compatibility tests we would fail the tests, but there was no mistaking the deep love, the powerful connection and the fact that we both knew from the moment we saw each other (Jake in his dream, and Angela getting off the bus) that they we fated to meet, marry and be together. We were in fact soul mates.
Over the years whenever things were difficult between us as they always can be with married couples, I would think back to the dream and then he would fall in love with her again and again and again. and when we were apart, I would have the dream, she was there looking at me with love flashing in her eyes - just staring at me and telling me how much she loved me.
The Wedding of a Thousand Guests,
Then we had our wedding. It was a huge celebrity wedding and I had no clue. It was a first in many respects. In Angela’s family, she was only the second Chung Ju Lee clan member (the ancient royal clan) to have ever married a foreigner. The first was Symgun Rhee, the First President of Modern Korea, and the second was my dear wife, Chong Oak Lee (later known as Angela Lee).
My father came for the wedding and the Koreans interviewed him on nation wide TV as he was a former Under Secretary of Labor and apparently was the highest ranking foreign father in law in Korean history. It made all the papers.
And finally we were the first foreign-Korean couple to get married at a Korean Army base. I was newly employed at the Hangjong Hak Kyo, the Korean Army Administration school.
So our marriage had a cast of 1,000 people. My father in law said he had never met most of his clans men and everyone wanted to come to the wedding.
I was totally unaware of this until many years later. My Korean was still not up to par and furthermore my wife did not want to alarm me or get me nervous. She was nervous herself. But she was determined that I was her man and we would be married.
It said a lot about our marriage. I wanted her to be happy and so went along with her desires but boy what a media circus it all was.a