Sunday, February 3, 2013

My father-the Parts I Never Knew

My father was a funeral director. He was very good at what he did but there were parts of him I never knew when growing up. By the time he became a father those parts had disappeared. I think that's normal as we grow older and responsibilities come along. I know I was determined to keep my hair down to my waist and listen to my records forever-but that certainly has gone to the wind  As far as my father goes-from what I can put together-those parts I never knew seemed to have stayed with him right up to the point of his buckling down and going to school. After that, he got married, bought a house, and started to have a family-that time of life when those responsibilities set in.

I remember hearing how he used to have a horse called Colonel. When I came across this photo I realized I was looking at my father riding his horse. He looks so content with Colonel-a natural for sure. Funny thing though, he is wearing a tie-something he always did even if he was going to the post office or the grocery store. I remember before we moved to the country I found a saddle in our attic-the very saddle in this picture. I didn't understand it was my father's. My brother and I would sit and play on it-take turns going for 'long rides' in the attic or playing out imaginary adventures where our horse saved us every time! After we moved, I never saw that saddle again.

An even more interesting side to my father is the fact he was known as a 'singing' waiter when he was in his teens. There was a restaurant where he'd wait on table on the weekends and sing as he moved from one table to the next. Young women would flock to the place just to hear him. They had a nickname for him. Still to this day women come up to me who knew my father back then. They tell me-with a little glint in their eyes-just how good he really was. That was back in the era of Frank Sinatra-back when crooners made the young girls swoon-something I think 'Nookie' did as he waited on those tables in that restaurant that has since been torn down.

Too bad as kids we don't understand our parents are so much more than parents-but then, as kids, we don't understand a lot of stuff-and maybe that's a good thing!

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