Living one’s own dreams, in an alternative way, translated…
As I surpassed midlife, my career is stable, my kids left the nest, it seemed, that it’s time, to be more nostalgic now; after the baptism of time, a lot of the hardships I’d weathered, stopped feeling so bitter, instead, they’d, turned sweet.
Taiwan from thirty years ago, most families couldn’t afford to send the children abroad to study. Although my husband was full of zest, worked in the firm, and studied for his TOEFL exams, but, his pay was limited, after he’d saved up every last dollar, studying abroad was still, a distant dream. Back then, my husband’s high school best friend was a contracted maker of uniforms that made the uniforms for a ton of colleges, my husband quit his job, and planned to sell the clothes for a year, to get the money for his studies abroad.
selling things like these by the road side…NOT my photo…
It was, a very difficult road, my husband and his friend called up the major colleges and universities on their own, and, set up the styles, the colors, the logo, the designs, picked out the materials, then, sent the clothes to the factories to be dyed, sewn up, packaged, then, delivered to the various schools. If any of these small areas had problems, then, the orders get delayed, and they’d be grilled by the schools; sometimes, the clients didn’t like the colors or the styles, and returned the shipments, and, they’d stashed their storage sky-high, and, all of their friends, relatives, families got the benefits—everybody gets the exercise clothes for free.
Very often, my husband was rushing to send the shipments of orders out, he’d ridden his motorcycle from Taipei to Taoyuan, and along the way, there was NO other company but the stars, and the cold wind that came at him hard, riding on the roadways, he’d become half-asleep as he’d ridden his motorcycle, I can’t figure out how he’d arrived back in Taipei in one piece. Once I’d gone up to Taipei to see him, I’d waited until two in the morn, when he’d made his way into the apartment, I saw he’d, forced that smile on his face, and started crying.
Even though, he’d worked so very hard, and still, the money he’d made was, about the same as a regular nine-to-five office worker, and, a regular nine-to-five worker doesn’t even need to get so stressed out in the mind, AND the body, and work through the nights.
But, the excesses need to be rid off, and, he’d thought of an idea, called up his cousin, and, set up a roadside stand, with nothing more than a plastic mat, started selling the shirts by the roadside.
The two grown men didn’t know a single thing about vending, wrote on a cardboard, $300 each, all the passersby chuckled at them, and, after they’d lowered the prices to $200 each, still, NOBODY showed ANY interests; at which time, a woman who’d sold hair accessories hollered out to them, “The Police are Here!”, the two of them rolled up their items in a panic, ran into hiding. They’d set up these roadside stands for just ten days, and they were only, able to sell THREE sets of workout clothes total.
to this…NOT my photo…
He’s dreams of going abroad to study went bust, and can only return to the firm to work again, after we married, he’d worked and studied, and finally, earned his licensure as an architect. Because he was never able to live his own dreams, he’d used that softer attitude, as well as a more humane approach, to design houses that people would want to live in, and, he’d sponsored many children from the poverty stricken areas of the world, hoping to help them live their dreams.
Over the years, his work stood erect, on the streets of various cities, he’d even given his employees the opportunities to shine, gave them the rewards; only because he’d understood the hardships of working hard, and not being able to reach his own dreams, it’d, made him, cherish what he has right now, and give more back to others.
So, this, is how a man, turned his own inability to reach his own dreams, into the drive to help others reach their dreams, because he’d weathered through the hardships himself, so, he can empathize with others who are having a hard time striving toward their dreams right now, and that makes him a good boss to work under, and, he’d become, famous, with his designed buildings, all over the cities now.