Couple things my dad helped me learn:
- Milk actually used to be delivered by a man with a horse-drawn carriage. In the winter it was a sleigh and the horse’s droppings (road apples) made for excellent hockey pucks.
- Never underestimate the power of a hot water bottle at the foot of your bed on a cold night.
- Just because he used to tell stories about “when I was a boy” it doesn’t suit his little daughter to walk around telling people stories about when she “was a boy”.
- Spiders are protected by a universal catch and release program.
- Being pulled up the stairs in a sleeping bag and then being allowed to slide back down in said soft blankety parcel is extremely fun.
- When I was 10 he could run faster backwards, than I could forwards.
- Bears won’t come near our campsite. The tent is safe and the story mom told about squirrels being able to open peanut butter jars is false.
Those are just a few of the fun things. My dad would give piggy backs, never serve us junk food, teach us to be polite and quiet, although when we misbehaved his English accent came out in his stern “first, middle, last name” call for us.
I’d like to think of him as a walking, talking Wikipedia or Google. Whenever I have a questions about anything in the universe #1 just ask my dad, #2 try Google.
He also always knows the best place in any town nearby to get a hearty breakfast for under 5 bucks.
Despite the fact that he would pick me up from school in a big embarrassing delivery van… coming right up to the doors yeah… right in front of all the cool kids… he would wake up at 5am to make me breakfast and take me to school early for my morning running club meets. He’d attend every rugby game (and we’d win every one he attended) and taught me everything about anything that I know. During those troubling teen years, he was always there for me even though our lives were both going topsy turvy.
He didn’t even freak out when I came back from a trip and told him I was in love with a boy from Iowa.
Today is his birthday. I’d like to take him for breakfast or for some fish and chips. Unfortunately, my life got even more crazy lately so for several reasons, I won’t be seeing him. I hope he knows just how much I appreciate him and maybe I’ll be able to catch him next week… maybe he’ll bake us a loaf of his multigrain bread, and I’ll be able to tell him I love him and wish him a happy birthday.