January 15, 2017, Prescott-
Last night, 22 of us paid homage to a man who worked, diligently, outside his area of expertise, for thirty-five years, bringing knowledge of human nature and psychological well-being, into the fast food industry.
Farouk “Frank” Assadi came to this country, from Iran, as part of a diaspora spawned by religious oppression. He lived and worked in Iowa and California, before settling in Prescott, around 2000. His Blimpie Sandwich and Salad Shop, part of a larger chain, was a central focus of meals for many, of all walks of life, for the sixteen years it was in existence. Before that, he had run Orange Julius franchises and a Blimpie, in another community. On December 31, Frank took down his food service shingle and will cast his net in another direction, after a period of semi-retired rest.
He’s 70, and thus serves as an inspiration for my own planned change of focus, in 2020. We, who work for wages, eventually earn the right to follow our hearts into avocation. For Frank, that will likely mean work in public health. For me, that will likely mean itinerant acts of service, combined with photography and writing, much as I’m doing during off-work hours now.
My son is visiting the Prescott area, this weekend, combining time with me and a modicum of winter camping, this evening, in a nearby US Forest Service campsite, at White Spar, which I visited last year, in the course of hiking the Prescott Circle Trail, in a series of segments.
He has grown up to build a strong character, somewhat different social and political views from my own, but with the sense of loyalty and work ethic, which I instilled in him, early on. I know he will continue to be a credit to the United States Navy, and to any other organization he may serve. In a few short weeks, Aram will head for the land of his birth, South Korea, and a new set of challenges and growth opportunities. I will watch this, proudly, from the sidelines.
In a few days, our nation enters a new phase: Governance by a man whose life has been spent in the private sector. I trust, though, that the American people will remain vigilant, and will call events as they see them. I don’t think all that many people, especially in my circle of family and friends, have given the departing president much credit, partly due to his own detached demeanour and partly due to his having come into office, with an unfamiliar face and name. I do think, however,that he did a lot more for the country than we can even see at present. Yet, it is also true that several bars need to be raised. I will have more to say on these, in the next post.