Tomorrow would have been my father’s 92nd birthday. He’s been gone ten years now.
|Sharing a laugh on Father’s Day|
So he gave me that book, which I tried to read. I didn’t have any context for it, and got lost trying to figure out which arrondissement was which.
My father passed away in April 2001; my trip was scheduled for that July. He didn’t have the chance to wish me bon voyage. On our last evening in Paris, our leaders arranged for us to have dinner aboard one of the boats that sail slowly up and down the Seine. And under the full moon that night, I thanked him for giving me Paris.
|Glasses raised on the bateau mouche|
This is something I wrote a few years ago, but it feels right to post it today.
|Grampa Mike stories never failed to crack us up|
From winter to spring during the last year of his life, Dad was in and out of hospitals. He suffered many indignities, experienced a lot of pain, and wept easily. One sunny day, sitting outside for the first time in weeks, he folded over, sobbing and keening, with the intense anguish of a man aware of his loosening grasp on a life he loved. During those months, he often spoke wistfully about his days as a young father with two little girls who called him Daddy, back when he shaved in front of an adoring and mystified audience.