Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Farewell to my Brother Vika

On Saturday, my older brother Vika will be laid to rest after a two year battle with cancer.
He was my father's son, older than Seka by 2 years. I met him when I was 11 years old, at Flag Day in Hawaii at Keehi Lagoon. He came up to Pat and said hello.
Salu just about had a heart attack.
I made a joke to an aunty after he was introduced "He's my long lost brother"
Salu just about had an aneurysm to follow up that heart attack.
My parents decided to tell us about him that night, after the fact. Up to that point, we had been a family of girls, so this was big news for me. I had always wanted a big brother who would beat up the bullies and mean kids that so often crossed my path. Seka didn't quite fit the image in my mind of a boy rescuing us from the evil palefaces that surrounded us.
I don't know what happened to him between that year we met and when we moved to Samoa 4 years later. His mother and my father were a complicated issue that resulted in him. Little did I know that that particular trait is very common in Samoan men in general, and Reid men in particular.
We were given the chance to really get to know him when we moved down in 1986. He worked for Pat's company, doing any and all feaus. He came and picked us up after school, watched us when our parents went on a trip, and never ratted us out to them when we snuck out with the car or had friends over. (Not always girl friends either. Ha ha.)
For the next 15 years or so, I would see him driving his bus or his tricked out truck on the road. The last time I saw him was in a store in Tutuila, maybe 6 years ago. He was shopping with his son and I was picking up something to drink.
It was not awkward-we were cordial. Chit chat for 3 minutes, then say goodbye. We never hung out or had Christmas together, but where ever he was, he was always my big brother.
No regrets for the times we didn't have together, just happy for the times we did.
Manuia lou malaga Vika.


Margaret said...

I understand completely! Thanks for the blog Mei. It was very sweet. Hope you are well!

Siana Burgess said...

Hey Mable :) Sorry to hear about your brother. I have an older half brother in Texas. He's my dad's oldest. So I know how it can feel to have someone a part of your life you never knew existed. I met him when I was 15 back in 83? or was it 84? LOLOL you can tell yeah I am much older now LOLOL Anyways... I am sorry to hear he passed away. Life is too short and before we know it it is gone. The scary part is that it can happen to anyone at any time regardless of weight height skin color or overall wellness. :( I hope you and Junius are doing well. It is always refreshing to hear or should I say "read" how you are doing. Much Love to you both, Siana

Ipo said...

Touching, very touching.

Dee said...

That is very nice that you can just appreciate the time spent together. I cherish that as my brother who lives in Maui is battling cancer.