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Me and Thee Together, Love

BY HILDI KANG

Superior Court took the broken pieces of my early life and nailed two of them into place. It took two years. 

I am my father’s child. He gave me grit. He gave me Asia. He ran away from home and worked his way through college to become a doctor—I knew I would go to college. He volunteered to fight in the trenches in France. Later he sailed on freighters across Asia. Married, he took us into the high Sierra for a job as doctor in a CCC camp building Sequoia National Park. He died when I was six. 

I am my grandma’s child. Through stories and photos, she gave me family. I knew more of England in the 1800s than I knew of America in the 1940s. 

The “Ann” years were difficult, but Grandma sustained me. “This will end,” she said. “It has to end.” 

Death held no fear. It happened. People died around me. People died in memory and in stories. Grandma and I walked over the hills of Oakland to the cemetery in Piedmont every Memorial day, to spend the day with our family there—Grandpa, my mother (Grandma’s daughter) and my father. 

In high school I realized kids talked of “applying” to colleges and I had no idea what that meant, or where college were. Unknown to me, teachers set me on my way. While at college in Berkeley, the Minister of Music at church heard my story and helped me lay the ghosts. He heard my music and gave it form. From that, I launched into my adult life.

Hildi Kang Bio

Hildi Kang is an educator, writer, and active traveler, having made trips by foot, bike, van, and llama. A graduate of the University of California, Berkeley, she taught special education and as Independent Scholar, has served as guest lecturer in Korean studies at various universities. Her writing includes books for elementary school teachers and academic books on Korean history. A book for young people was inspired by her own trip across the Silk Road of China and Uzbekistan. When not writing or traveling, she plays cello in a regional orchestra.

To learn more of her family and writings, visit www.hildikang.com