Sunday, June 15, 2014

Father's Day Musings

Sophie and I are spending a lazy, quiet Father's Day at home, just the two of us. My father has been gone thirty-seven  years, and I've been single thirty years. The fathers in my family to celebrate are my brother (father of two, grandfather of five) and my wonderful sons and sons-in-law but they are all far away. The local family has gone to Denton to be with Christian's family and watch the TCU College World Series baseball game. I was invited but declined--a long day was not what I wanted after our doggie birthday party last night. The dog honoree half of this household is totally tapped out. Has slept all morning.
I've piddled--watering plants, watched Sunday morning TV and read the paper--used to take an hour; now it takes ten minutes. But I did make a meat-loaf--two lbs. of ground meat may sound a bit much for one person but it will make great sandwiches...and I may share either with the Burtons or the houseguests I'm expecting this week. It's a mix of mostly ground lamb with a bit of ground pork.
I've actually made some progress on editing my work-in-progress, and my mentor sent me a critique with lots of helpful suggestions, so I'm anxious to keep working. But I do think I feel a nap coming on.
Father's Day of  course brings back memories of my dad, and I wish I had digital images to post  like so many others have. Dad was forty when I was born--not so old today but old in that day. He was a workaholic, so I don't remember much playing but I do clearly remember hearing the story of the day he took me as a toddler, to sled on the small hill in the park by our house. Another gentleman came along and said, "Well, I guess I'll go home and get my granddaughter too." Dad was crushed.
There are other good memories--vacations in the Indiana Dunes, trips to Canada, his birth place, but I came closest to my father when I worked for him.
He was president of an osteopathic college and administrator of the associated hospital, and yes, he brought his work home with him at night. I was his executive secretary for several years while in college, and whatever management and organizational skills I have I got from him. Nothing angered him more than to answer his phone and hear a secretary say, "Please hold for...." He answered his own phone and thought others should place their own calls.
Dad was a voracious reader, and sometimes he and Mom read aloud to each other at night. They particularly liked Will and Ariel Durant's histories, and Dad was a huge fan of Winston Churchill. On weekends, his spent his time gardening and when he retired, gardening was his principal activity. He loved it. And he made a terrific grandfather, spending more time with his grandchildren and taking great delight in them. He particularly thought Jordan, my youngest, was created especially for his delight. But they all also remember how strict he was about table manners.
Thanks, Grandfather, for making me the person I am and for giving me standards to live up to. 

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