March 03, 2010

What Can I Say About My Dad that Will Bring Him to Life Here?

Today would have been my dad's 89th birthday. He died in 1983 - this year, I will have more years on this earth without him than with him...and I still miss him.

My dad was quiet, unassuming, shy even. He rarely raised his voice. He never sought the spotlight. He went to work, he came home. He was not a big socializer; he didn't really know our neighbors.

My favorite time of day with my dad was before I left for school in the mornings -I would stand by the bathroom door and talk to him while he shaved in the morning. Then we'd sit at the table and talk while he'd drink the coffee and eat the toast that I made for him for breakfast.

He liked to bowl - he once joined a work bowling league; years later, he and my mom joined a couples league, those were his exceptions to going with the crowd.

He liked to fish. He had a small motorboat. One summer when I was about 10, he was filling a trashcan with water, so he could insert the motor and test it...when my teenage cousin, set for a night out, walked by with her freshly ironed hair (yep, girls ironed their hair with a steam iron). The garden hose sprung out of the can and dowsed Arlene's hair.

It was one of those moments when you weren't sure it was safe to laugh - she looked THAT angry.

My dad liked to hunt. I don't think he ever brought down a buck, but I remember helping him get pellets out of rabbit flesh.

He liked to camp. Our family vacations included tents or campers, campfires. He'd pick out of the way spots to visit, as well as popular destinations. He never asked for directions, so sometimes our final stop was not on his original itinerary.

My brother and I rarely knew our vacation destination - it was all a big secret. We'd just pack our clothes and go.

He loved to visit Canada. I don't know what it was about our neighbors to the North, but I  distinctly remember my mother saying "OMG, not CANADA AGAIN!" one year.

He let me put bullet hole decals on my mother's Lincoln when we went on a trip through the Ozarks. We stopped at more Stuckey's than anyone ever should - I'm not sure why he liked to go there.

I like to think I am like my dad. I AM shy (though writing this blog kinda blows that outta the water). I don't socialize with my neighbors, I am not outgoing in social situations.

Like my dad, I don't ask for directions when driving.

And if I'm driving and you want to stop for lunch? It better be on the right side of the road - my dad and I don't like crossing traffic...unless maybe it's to go to Stuckey's.

After all, I still am was daddy's little girl. 

 

Left to right (seated):Aunt Peggy, Uncle Don, Grandpap, Grandma, cousin Denise.
Standing: Me, my dad, my brother Greg, my mom, and far right, the little guy, my cousin Alan.
I think I was 13 in this pic.
 

5 comments:

  1. such a good post. Whadda ya do...

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  2. Your dad sounds like he was a great man

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  3. what a very nice tribute to your father. He's smiling.

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  4. Thank you for sharing that. My dad isn't well and won't be with us much longer and I am having a very hard time with that. The only thing you should change is "you still are dad's little girl" and always will be.

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  5. You did a fine job! I think your dad and my dad are having a good old time up in heaven!

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