You knew this one had to be about my dad.
I’ve only ever heard this story second hand, but it shows the quiet (well, maybe not so quiet) strength my father had. As a young adult in communist Hungary, he knew education was the only way to get anywhere. He was determined to be an engineer—not so much because he had a passion for it, but because he knew he could earn a good living and support a family as an engineer. Unfortunately, at that time all young men had to serve in the Hungarian army for two years starting as soon as they finished compulsory school. He really, really did NOT want to serve in the army. There were few exemptions, but it wasn’t like he was an ultra genius whom they would immediately excuse so that he could work on secret projects or something. Yet somehow he talked his way into getting a university exemption. He could attend school and not serve in the army.
Someone neglected to tell the army that.
He was told to report on such and such a day to register and enter basic training. Well, he showed up but started arguing that he wasn’t supposed to be there, he had an exemption, he was supposed to go to school, etc. They didn’t listen. So one the second day, he continued: It was a mistake, he was supposed to be in school, the army wasn’t supposed to have him. He complained for four solid days until they finally said okay, go, we don’t want you, just shut up.
He went to school.
If you were a University student, you were supposed to serve summers. He didn’t do that either.
This was his ID for his second year of school.
I miss you, Apu. You left us much, much, much too early.
Books I’m reading now:
The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare
(But I’m getting a bunch of new books today because I’m attending a book signing by friends and fellow authors Darynda Jones, Katie Lane, Celeste Bradley, and Jeffe Kennedy.)