History of my novel, Friday 10:03 (Part 13)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

(This series begins here.)

So it was my plan to rent a garret in Paris, practice my French, and write my novel.

The day of my last final, in June, 1972, I bought a one-way ticket as far as London, for September 16. I intended to spend most of the summer writing, with two ten-day breaks to volunteer at UCLA’s summer camp for underprivileged kids, UniCamp. I planned one session for elementary-aged diabetics, and a second for the kids I’d been doing ESL with in Chinatown.

What I hadn’t planned on for that summer was falling in love.

Vicki and I had been friends for 18 months. We'd even spent one day together at the beach (see Part 8), but I graduated from UCLA not expecting to see her again. However, for the Chinatown kids I was registering for UniCamp, I needed to interview the parents and I had one Spanish speaking family on my list. In those days I had some fumbling French and the barest beginnings of Japanese. But Vicki was fluent in Spanish and I’d left UCLA the last day regretting that I’d never had a chance for a proper goodbye.

We arranged to go together on a Saturday morning for the interviews. Events of the day conspired so that we had about ten hours to talk about deep things, and sometime during that day, I caught a glimpse of possibilities I’d previously ruled out. Long-story-short, we spent the summer investigating those possibilities. I did my summer camps, but I got very little writing done.

And when she accompanied me to the airport on September 16th, I told her I’d be home for Christmas.


Hey!Mr.Carroll, Vera is here^^
Is this your old memory with Vicki? Or is this your source of your novel? Anyway,this article reminds me of these summer days in ChongQing when I asked you many naive questions about love and sex. Well, I think as time passes by and as my growing experience, I ought to know more about love...^^

Anonymous said...
April 20, 2008 at 1:20 AM  

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