Return to Myanmar
Dream Big

One of my dreams for a couple of decades has been to interview the Lady, Aung San Suu Kyi. In fact, while dreaming my dream, I worked very hard at completing that quest. Prior to my trip to Myanmar (Burma), I wrote to dozens of people both here and in Myanmar to have them forward my email and web address to the Lady. However, I was not able to get in contact with her. Even when I was in Myanmar for a month, I talked with many people attempting to reach Aung San Suu Kyi. Nevertheless, all my attempts were to no avail.


The Lady

Additionally, while in Myanmar, I was invited to a protest rally by Min Ko Naing. There I was at a protest rally near Sule Pagoda on Myanmar's Independence Day in Yangon. It reminded me of protest rallies back in the 60s in the States. While I walked around, I could hear in the background the leaders of the 88 Generation Students with whom I had lunch. Nonetheless, I don't speak Burmese and didn't understand any of their speeches. Nonetheless, what I heard clearly in my mind was Joan Baez singing We Shall Overcome. Those couple hours were one of the most transformative moments in my entire life.


Joan Baez

Therefore, after returning from Myanmar, I attempted to contact Joan Baez. I wanted to return to Myanmar with her where she could sing We Shall Overcome near Sule Pagoda where the 8888 Uprising occurred. In addition, I could interview Aung San Suu Kyi. However, I was not able to contact Joan Baez. Therefore, I came to terms with not achieving all that I wanted.

Then it hauntings. They had returned. My hauntings came to me from three separate sources. My sources were three of my mentors, Don Quixote, Randy Pausch, and Teddy Roosevelt who allowed me to be rejuvenated through their haunting words.

  1. Don Quixote taught me to joist with the windmills of my life like he did. Essentially, he was my role model and was "willing to march into hell for a heavenly cause" late in his life. I also am late in my life. Nonetheless, I don't want to fail at dreaming my dreams, regardless of my age.
  2. Randy Pausch gave his Last Lecture as he was dancing with death. Nine months after that lecture, Pausch had died as a result of his pancreatic cancer metastasizing. In spite of doing the dance, Pausch taught me about the benefit of facing death. I have faced death twice already. Both dances were transformative. While I don't wish to dance again with a traumatic brain injury or prostate cancer, I would not delete those dances. They caused me to really live. Pausch said, "It's important to have specific dreams. Dream Big. Dream without fear." Fear of failure can interfere with my dreams if I let it.
  3. Teddy Roosevelt delivered a speech at the Sorbonne over a century ago. There was within that long speech a single paragraph that is known as the Man in the Arena.

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.

Roosevelt said to fight the good fight, and "if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." I get that. I might fail, but if I do, it is not because I was afraid of trying. If I don't try, failure is certain.

Therefore, after my hauntings from my three mentors, I will try again to interview the Lady and have Joan Baez sing at Sule Pagoda.

Additionally, I am asking you for your help. Someone who reads this essay about my dream might know some means to get to Aung San Suu Kyi or Joan Baez. I need all the help in realizing my dream. Can you imagine what it would be like to have a half million people singing, Description: We shall overcome in Burmese, which is Burmese for We Shall Overcome at Sule Pagoda? Thank advance.

Burma flag

Burmese independence flag

Visit the Burma Independence page to read more about this topic.

Connecting The Dots

Connecting the Dots

Visit the Connecting the Dots page to read more about this topic.

Darkest Before Dawn

Darkest Before Dawn

Visit the Darkest Before Dawn page to read more about this topic.

The Last Lecture

The Last Lecture

Visit the The Last Lecture page to read more about this topic.

Dancing with Death

Dancing with Death

Visit the Dancing with Death page to read more about this topic.

My Hauntings

My Hauntings

Visit the My Hauntings page to read more about this topic.

Don Quixote

"Don Quixote"

Visit the "Don Quixote" page to read more about this topic.

Man in the Arena

Man in the Arena

Visit the Man in the Arena page to read more about this topic.

An old man and his grandson

An Old Man and His Grandson

Visit The Mentors and Me page to read more about this topic.