Monday, May 15, 2006

Daddy

Today is two years since my Daddy left this world to go into that mystery beyond this life.  I often wondered how people were able to remember the day and time they lost a loved one.  It is no longer difficult to understand.  I know the day, the time and when that moment happens I am aware of it, just as I was today.  In the midst of the rush of the day my mind leapt to one thought..."This is when my Daddy died".

I wish that you could have met him.  He was a gracious mountain man.  I never heard him gossip and talk bad about folks.  He was quiet and didn't ask for a lot.  After he was gone I helped my Mama go through his clothes and he still had socks he had not worn, had not opened in over 20 years.  He was saving them for when he needed them.  They are still in my drawer, still with the wrapper around them, ever unopened.

He could not tell a joke or story to save his life.  He would get tickled or mix the joke up and try to tell it. Finally getting through it as he chuckled at himself and the punchline that he probably delivered in the middle of the story instead of the end.

Daddy liked his coffee in thin china cups.  I don't know why, but he did.  No mugs for him.  Mama would go to garage sales and the thrift to find them, in case one broke.  He wouldn't use the good china, so she kept a few hand me downs for him to use.

I remember walking with him when I was a very small boy, holding just his little finger that he would hold out for me.  His legs were so long as he walked - all 6 feet of him that I would constantly be at a run.

Sometimes I would say, "Daddy, wait for me, I'm runnin' just to keep up".  When I got to be 6'2" I could walk along side this giant easily.  When he began to get sick with COPD I was the one who would have to walk slower, often stopping for him to catch his breath.  He once told me he was just getting me back for all the times I stopped to look at some rock or bug as I walked with him as a child.

When Mama cleaned out his closet I took an old sweater he wore often.  I placed it in a large zip lock bag and put it away.  It was an odd thing to do, but that old sweater smelled like him.  When I open that bag it still does.
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