Gone like the wind
The fact that he is rarely overcome with nostalgia is a conditioning of self-preservation that appears to have served him well. He can walk away and not look back, yet not burn his bridges because he uses the wells of memory to water the fields of stories that grow and grow.
Would he have loved the company of forebears he has not seen for a quarter of a century? Interesting question, that seems when set against culture and tradition, you are to keep them close and give them a renewed youth from the fruits of procreation.
Tradition is broken and norm is none of his for conformity, the sacrifices they made were responsibilities they willingly took upon themselves, gratitude he must have, but not to the point of worship.
He pines at times, but their differences are as stark as night is from day, the things they dwelt upon for leverage estranged them, they parted in mind and body, yet never in spirit, the bond was never cut like the umbilical cord is severed to allow child to begin to live independent of mother.
They enthroned themselves seeking homage when they probably could have asked and he probably could have striven to make well, each to a degree obstinate or set in their ways.
No meeting past or planned as time counts seconds to an eternity of something unknown, a beyond that is the destination of the many whose more recent tombstones signifies they passed this long road of personal and shared experiences.
For choices unchosen
They had a choice, much as he did, a will they both had, but deigned to act. Opportunity came when he lay dying in a foreign land amongst strangers who became family. Given 5 weeks to live, no one budged, they partied in their world, and he suffered in his world. He survived, thanks to their prayers, some providence, grace, medicine? In all, he and they were thankful yet still apart.
The pain lingers, yet the will is firm, lives lived apart might find a reunion of sorts with each a choice to make or abandon, the story told tending to regret about what might have been, but never was.
All is forgiven, yet nought forgotten, till we return and mingle with the sands of time from whence we came, a tear a day, a fear away, a care to stay, a dare to sway, to forbear we'll always pray.
No one is duty bound to serve the other, but respect for each other goes a long way.