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Good bye, Amoo
He bought me my first bike


Hamid Bakhsheshi

December 20, 2005

The quite, sad voice of Azita, my sister, on the phone was quite the sad messenger. She didn't have to say much. I had known for nearly a week that my only Amoo (father's brother), had been in an accident and multiple fracture and internal injuries, has left him holding on to life. It was 11:30 pm and my wife and I were having dinner with some friends. She said a sad hello and told me that Amoo just passed away. I responded by simply saying "ok" a few times. I couldn't believe it nor could I accept the fact that a man of his stature and health could have perish so easily.  I guess six days is just not enough to get you prepared for a loved one's departure.

Amoo was only 55, according to his sister, well short of his allowed life expectancy. I had thought about and had prepared myself for a few people leaving me, due to their age and/or illness, but Amoo was definitely not one of them.

In a land, where human life has very little value, he goes across the street, in his neighborhood, to buy some groceries and on the way back home, using the pedestrian cross walk, which is a rarity in Iran, he got hit by a passenger car. The impact was so hard that it broke over ten bones in his ox-like body, including his skull and ribs.

Amoo left behind a wonderful, caring wife and four children. He also left behind a much older brother, one older and one younger sister whose sorrow I shared all day today.  He also left behind hundreds of broken hearts, including mine.

Amoo was there, when I first opened my eyes to this world. Rumor has it that he even picked my name; I thank you for that Amoo. He was always around. He had the kind of pleasant personality that made it easy to be around him. He always smoked Winston cigarettes and as much as I hate cigarette smoke, there was something about hugging him and smelling that smoke, which was always diluted by his very clean clothing.  He used to take me out, when I was a boy, to the movies, out for ice cream, merry-go-rounds, or wherever I wanted to go.

I have numerous fund memories of him. He bought me my first bike, when Dad thought it was too soon and too dangerous for me to have a bike. He came over, took me across the street and bought me my first bike. He also came to my sick bed and cried out loud, when I had my first accident with that bike. Thanks for the bike Amoo, you were the only one who knew how much I wanted a bike.

When I was younger he broke his leg in a motorcycle accident. I never forget the day he came to take me out again with a pin in his leg and crutches. My mom would argue with him that you with these crutches, why is it necessary to take Hamid out. But he wouldn't have it any other way. We went out, had sandwiches, went out to the park and he endured the difficulties to spend time with me. Thanks for caring for me Amoo.

I worked in his shop one summer. He was a talented and worthy iron-worker. That summer I broke one of his very expensive metal saw blades, he didn't say a word to upset me. Instead he consulted me and bought me a hamburger. Thanks for your modesty Amoo.

He was kind, patient, caring, and a truly loved all of us kids.  When I went home last year, he was with me almost every day. He would bring apples or pears from his garden and I would eat them with the same love he used to pick them for me off of his trees, no matter how full I was. Even as we decided to make a trip to Isfahan and he couldn't come with us, he drove all the way up there couple of days later, just to be with me. Thanks for the apples and pears Amoo, thanks for going out of your way to spend time with me.

I miss you. I don't know if anyone is going to be literally large enough to hug me in the airport, next time I leave Iran. I miss you and miss all that you stood for. You were a true man, a self made master of your trade and someone I was always extremely proud of. I'm sorry I never told you that... see you on the other side, hoping that there is no pain where you are. Say hello to grandma and grandpa, I love you.

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To Hamid Bakhsheshi

Hamid Bakhsheshi


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