Thursday, February 16, 2012

Love, in its many forms

We didn't celebrate Valentine's Day the way I thought we would.  Earlier in the day, Ethan's colleague, and our friend, G, was injured in a motorbike accident.  At one point, we thought her clavicle may have been broken.  It was only a fracture (thank goodness!), but she was quite bruised.  We spent the evening with her at the hospital and then at her home. 

I sat in the hospital room and later in her Khmer home, surrounded by her friends, as she recounted the events of the day, which involved a couple of Khmer motorbike riders harassing her as she rode along.  I sat watching and listening as we all made arrangements - who would stay with her this day, who would cook for her on this day or that day, who would spend time with her.  (She lives alone.) I was struck by how love comes in many forms, this time, in the shuffling in and out of friends through cold hospital rooms and concrete Khmer houses at a time of need.

Like many others, I sometimes think this holiday is for suckers.  Intellectually, I want to say this, but the truth is: I've come around.  Ethan and I exchanged small gifts.  Our dinner plans were foiled, but he cooked me a small meal before we left for G's house bearing pastries and other goodies.  I bought him a small box of chocolates from Chocolate by the Shop, my favorite chocolatier in Phnom Penh. 

I feel very lucky.

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