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So I was sitting here, I’ve been up since 6am, and I’m trying/struggling to not fall asleep because The Kid has been sick and I wanna be awake if she needs me.

And I decide to do I tiny bit of self care and massage some of my homemade all natural nail and cuticle balm (shameless plug) into my nails, and the lavender scent is not helping my wakefulness. My whole plan was to stay awake as long as possible by reading. Haven’t stayed up late reading in a long time.

But somehow I manage to start thinking about how sometimes when my dad would drive me back to college after my bi-weekly home visit (I was unlicensed to the extent my learner’s permit—which took five tries to get the first time—expired, and grocery and laundry money coincided with Dad’s paychecks) we would stop at this little ice cream stand in a small town not far from home, and we’d get milkshakes.

Dad also liked to count the dead animals, laugh about “shoo poke cat” skunks, and point out flocks of turkeys in the hills.

He also quite enjoyed the “scenic routes”. That man knows how to get anywhere in all kinds of ways. I swear there’s a hillbilly GPS in his noggin with the longest routes with the best views highlighted.

He can fix just about anything and if he can’t do it he know someone who can. He knows literally everybody, actually.

Except the time he told me I didn’t need to flip the breaker to change a ceiling fan, I’d trust him with anything. Almost.

He’s put new doors on our house—cutting them to fit when necessary. He installed a new-to-us window when I was angry and threw a popcorn tin on my bed, which bounced into my window. He wasn’t happy about it.

There was this one time, we bought a computer off my uncle. It worked fine (for Windows MILLENNIUM EDITION) but I wanted to use the floppy disc drive (yes, I’m old) to save stories too. But I couldn’t get the disc into the drive.

So my dad, who could barely read, never touched a computer, got a screwdriver, opened it up, popped the face off , and shined a light inside.

My small cousins had shoved A PLASTIC MILK JUG RING AND A DORITO into the floppy drive of the computer. No wonder we got it so cheap. They thought they ruined it with the millennium edition update.

From swapping out engines and transmissions in vehicles, to using black electrical tape on open wounds, to knife making and wood carving, my dad could do just about anything.

Also that “can barely read” thing? Yeah he taught himself how to read so he could get his concealed carry permit.

Oh and can’t forget to mention how proud he was of his new dentures.

No idea why my daddy suddenly came to mind. I don’t call him enough, and I feel like a bad daughter for it. But I do think about him a lot. He’s almost 70, his health isn’t what it used to be, and after a heart attack, a quadruple bypass years later, diabetes and a lifetime of smoking it wasn’t much to begin with.

He retired after mom died, and I’m starting to believed when he says he shouldn’t have stopped working. Not that he could have worked much longer, but it kept him busy and gave him a purpose.

Thanks for reading this mini tribute to my silly old dad. Had absolutely no plans to post today, but he came up. I’m gonna see if I can convince my kid to come sleep with me.

Here’s a poorly shot and zoomed in video of a cardinal.

Featuring barking pepper dog

Also I have a YouTube channel!

Thanks for reading

-c