After that, shrimpin' was easy. And since people still needed them shrimps for shrimp cocktails and barbecues and all. And since we were the only boat left standing, "Bubba-Gump" shrimp's what they got. We got a whole bunch of boats. Twelve Jenny's, a big ol' warehouse, we even have hats that says "Bubba-Gump" on 'em. "Bubba-Gump Shrimp." It's a household name.
We've got more money than Davy Crocket.
He never actually said so, but I think he made his peace with God.
Now, because I had been a football star, and a war hero, and a national celebrity, and a shrimpin' boat captain, and a college graduate, the city of fathers of Greenbow, Alabama, decided to get together and offered me a fine job. So, I never went back to work for Lieutenant Dan. Though he did take care of my Bubba Gump money. He got me invested in some kind of fruit company. And so then I got a call from him saying we don't have to worry about money no more and I said, "That's good. One less thing. "Now, Momma said there's only so much fortune a man really needsand the rest is just for showing off. So, I gave a whole bunch of it to the Four Square Gospel Church and I gave a whole bunch to the Bayou La Batre Fishing Hospital. And even though Bubba was dead, and Lieutenant Dan said I was nuts, I gave Bubba's mommy Bubba's share. And you know what? She didn't have to work in nobody's kitchen no more. And 'cause I was godzillionaire and I liked doing it so much, I cut that grass for free.
I am not a smart man, but I know what love is.
Mamma said you gotta' put the past behind you before you can move on.
Mamma said stupid is as stupid does!
Dear God, make me a bird, so I can fly far. Far far away from here.
His name's Forrest...I named him after his daddy.
My family knows ever'thing there is to know 'bout the shrimpin' bidness.
Anyway, like I was sayin', shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, saute it. Dey's uh, shrimp-kabobs, shrimp creole, shrimp gumbo. Pan fried, deep fried, stir-fried. There's pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich. That- that's about it.
You died on a Saturday morning and I had you placed here under our tree. And I had that house of your father's bulldozed to the ground. Momma always said dyin' was a part of life. I sure wish it wasn't. Little Forrest, he's doing just fine. About to start school again soon. I make his breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day. I make sure he combs his hair and brushes his teeth every day. Teaching him how to play ping pong. He's really good. We fish a lot. And every night, we read a book. He's so smart, Jenny. You'd be so proud of him. I am. He, uh, wrote a letter, and he says I can't read it. I'm not supposed to, so I'll just leave it here for you. Jenny, I don't know if Momma was right or if, if it's Lieutenant Dan. I don't know if we each have a destiny, or if we're all just floating around accidental-like on a breeze, but I, I think maybe it's both. Maybe both is happening at the same time. I miss you, Jenny. If there's anything you need, I won't be far away.
Now, when I was a baby, Momma named me after the great Civil War hero, General Nathan Bedford Forrest. She said we was related to him in some way. And, what he did was, he started up this club called the Ku Klux Klan. They'd all dress up in their robes and their bedsheets and act like a bunch of ghosts or spooks or something. They'd even put bedsheets on their horses and ride around. And anyway, that's how I got my name. Forrest Gump. Momma said that the Forrest part was to remind me that sometimes we all do things that, well, just don't make no sense.
We lived about a quarter mile of Route 17, about a half mile from the town of Greenbow, Alabama. That's in the county of Greenbow. Our house had been in Momma's family since her grandpa's grandpa's grandpa had come across the ocean about a thousand years ago. Something like that. Since it was just me and Momma and we had all these empty rooms, Momma decided to let those rooms out. Mostly to people passing through. Like from, oh, Mobile, Montgomery, place like that. That's how me and Mommy got money. Momma was a real smart lady.
Sometimes I guess there just aren't enough rocks.
And that's all I have to say about that.
I'm pretty tired, I think I'll go home now.
That day, for no particular reason, I decided to go for a little run. So I ran to the end of the road. And when I got there, I thought maybe I'd run to the end of town. And when I got there, I thought maybe I'd just run across Greenbow County. And I figured, since I run this far, maybe I'd just run across the great state of Alabama. And that's what I did. I ran clear across Alabama. For no particular reason I just kept on going. I ran clear to the ocean. And when I got there, I figured, since I'd gone this far, I might as well turn around, just keep on going. When I got to another ocean, I figured, since I'd gone this far, I might as well just turn back, keep right on going. When I got tired, I slept. When I got hungry, I ate. When I had to go... you know... I went.
Jenny came back and stayed with me. Maybe it was because she had nowhere else to go. Or may be it was because she was so tired, because she went to bed and slept and slept like she hadn't slept in years. It was wonderful having her home. Every day we'd take a walk, and I'd jabber on like a monkey in a tree and she'd listen about ping-pong and shrimpin' boats and Momma makin' a trip to Heaven. I did all the talkin'. Jenny most of the time was real quiet.
Sorry I had a fight in the middle of your Black Panther party.
I thought I was going back to Vietnam, but instead, they decided the best way for me to fight communists was to play ping-pong. So I was in the Special Services, traveling around the country, cheering up all them wounded veterans and showing them how to play ping-pong. I was so good that some years later the Army decided I should be on the All-American Ping-Pong Team. We were the first Americans to visit the land of China in, like, a million years or something like that, and somebody said that world peace was in our hands. But all I did was play ping-pong. When I got home, I was national celebrity. Famouser even than Captain Kangaroo.
Now, I don't know much about anything, but I think some of American's best young men served in this war. There was Dallas, from Phoenix. Cleveland, he was from Detroit. And Tex was, well, I don't remember where Tex come from.
Bubba was my best good friend. I had to make sure he was okay. And on my way back to find Bubba, well, there was this boy laying on the ground. I couldn't just let him lay there all alone, scared the way he was, so I grabbed him up and run him out of there. And every time I went back looking for Bubba, somebody else was saying, "Help me, Forrest. Help me."
For some reason, ping pong came very natural to me. So I started playing it all the time. I played ping-pong even when I didn't have anyone to play ping-pong with. The hospital's people said it made me look like a duck in water, whatever that means. Even Lieutenant Dan would come and watch me play. I played ping-pong so much, I even played it in my sleep.