An elderly man tells his story: what made him leave everything behind to start a new life on another planet.
My name is Louis. From the French, and not to be confused with the English Lewis. Louis. The accent is on the second syllable and the 's' is silent. Loo-EE. I am so tired of being called LOO-iss.
Now that I've got that out of the way, what did you want? Oh, yes. My story. The story of my life. Well, I was born in--What? Not the whole story? Yes, I suppose you'd find that rather boring. But you asked how I got here--those were your words: "How'd you get here?" How can I tell you that without telling the whole story? Hush. Let me think.
I was born in Canada. My mother was from Paris, and my father... What's that? Where's Canada? Well, I suppose I shouldn't be surprised. You kids don't pay much attention to ancient history, do you? And your ancestors came here from the US, didn't they? I thought as much. Well, Canada was north of the US. They called it the "Great White North." Not that it was white. Mostly green, as I recall. Anyway, there was a lot of French-Canadians there, but my father wasn't one of them. I've already told you my mother was from France. My father was a mix of English, Irish, Scottish, and German.
Am I boring you? Sometimes I talk too much. Shall I continue? Where was I now? Oh, yes. Canada.
Now, the francophones in Canada mostly all lived in the East, but I grew up in the West. So, even though I learned both tongues as a child, I used French only at home, when speaking with my mother.
Do you know any French? No, of course not. Why learn a second language? Everything up here is English. Most of you kids don't see any reason even to learn a little history, let alone a dead language. I'm not saying you're lazy--maybe you are, but it's not really your fault. It's the way you were raised. Your parents had to work so hard to wring life out of the red dirt here, but they want a better life for you, so they've handed you everything.
But I was talking about how I got here, what made me want to leave Earth behind and join the colonists to Mars. I suppose I'll start my story there, with my reasons for leaving everything behind me.