I posted this post for Father’s Day in 2013. For very personal reasons it resonates with me today.
We are all in movement – going away from or to something. A new journey began yesterday and I am an unwilling traveler.
Originally posted on pjcharles photography:
This year he turned 80. When I look at him he is locked somewhere 45 years ago… I think that was the time I first thought of him as a man, and not just my father. I still think he can do anything and heal any wound just like he did when we sat on those steps in Richmond Virginia all those years ago.
In two weeks we are going on an adventure. Just the two of us. Off to explore and to understand – for me to be his daughter and him to be…
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In these last weeks before leaving this home that has been so good to us, I find myself pausing. I reflect on objects we have collected through the years knowing that they will be tucked away in storage for months only to be placed somewhere else. I remember when I bought them and with whom and reconnect with why it is a treasure to me. I think of my grandmother and the many moments we had in this house honoring her and recall how she lived to the end surrounded by the things she loved. I hope the same will be true for me. That I will always remember that afternoon with DC at Grange Hall when we found this reminder that life is short and to avoid chasing your reflection.
I refer to it as doing the turtle. As the alarm goes off my head pops out from under the warm comfort of my bed to sniff around and assess the air temperature. My arm comes out next and reaches for my phone to look at the weather. And on days, like today, when it reads 26 degrees with a windchill that makes it feel like 21 degrees I turtle back into my shell – reverting to the downy softness of my bed. At that point a debate begins in my head about doing the right thing versus doing the warm thing and 30 minutes later I emerge. At that point, I begin the debate again. Same principles only now I am vertical. And that’s when it happens… my mind wanders to the beauty of California and the consistency of the early morning light as it appears over the hills behind my house. I think of how I rarely consider the temperature as a part of my morning routine. The consistency with which I attack the morning climb waiting right outside my door.
Literally just arrived back in Dallas. The weekend flew by – clear skies and 70 degree weather made the re-entry a bit harrowing. This is the view I will remember from this house during the cold months. I have a routine when arriving home… Walk in. Set aside any packages I might be carrying. Adjust the lights, turn on the fireplace and then hang up my coat. Next step… sit on the hearth until I am good and warm. That is precisely what I did after hitting the grocery store for the week’s fare.
I will miss this view and the many nights I have sat on this hearth.
There are times when taking a photograph seems intrusive. Such was the case last evening disembarking from the plane as it arrived in California. Sitting in the row in front of me was a businessman ending his week and next to him a WW2 veteran. I know this from the hat he proudly wore. As I collected my things and stood ready to free myself from the shackles of seat 6F I overheard the businessman ask his seat mate whether turkey would be on the menu for Thanksgiving. The veteran replied… “My son has cancer and so we will eat what he can eat. I am just glad to be here and to spend time with him.” We all patiently waited as the businessman cleared the aisle for the veteran’s safe departure. Slowly, the cabin emptied following him up the long jetway, at the end of which everyone scattered in different directions.
Leaving the jetway I happened upon the businessman collecting his things and looking for his parking ticket. Moved deeply I stop to note his kindness to his seat mate. It was so charming and lovely and I felt honored to have seen this gentle and simple act of humanity.
The airport was empty as it was nearly the last flight of the night. I too was harried wanting to reconnect with CF and begin our short weekend. I stopped and looked around, to firmly fix in my memory, the story and emotions of this moment I had just experienced.
No photo necessary.