Tuesday, June 23, 2009

My "Other" Dad

See that man with the kind face? That's my "other" dad. No, I wasn't raised by him and he hasn't been a part of my life as long as my "real" dad. On the other hand, he has been every bit a dad to me for about 37 years.

Cathy's dad is one of those rare people who really knew how to retire. "Retire" may be a misnomer for him. He went from his postal route to his wood shop. As testament to this, we have a beautiful grandfather clock and a unique coffee table in our living room, as well as various other pieces throughout the house.

This man whose grandchildren call him "PaPa" is a quiet, thoughtful man who helps instill in each of us the values of hard work and thrift. I married a girl who can squeeze dollars out of nickels and her daddy is a prime reason.

We have laughed over the years at his little piece of paper and pencil always found in his shirt pocket, but he gets the last laugh when he remembers what the rest of us forgot. He wrote it down!

I am forever grateful that he took me on as a Pinocle partner when Cathy and I were first married. He endured endless games of us losing because of my rookie mistakes. (We've had the last laugh on that one, too!)

The enduring lesson I have learned from him is to play games with your family and keep your sense of humor. We were playing "Balderdash" one day when the word was "cleek." Someone wrote the artificial definition: "a small, chinese stream." I looked over at his shaking shoulders and tear-filled eyes as he stifled a loud laugh and knew he was the culprit.

Bob, you mean more to me than you know. Thank you for being a dad to me! Happy belated, Father's Day!


Cathy said...

I'm so glad that son-in-laws remember their father-in-laws on Father's Day since the daughters (yes, plural!) sometime forget!

Dina said...

I just read your Father's Day post and it made my eyes well up. Earthly good-byes are so painful, but the wisdom and great memories left behind definitely help ease that pain until we will someday say a heavenly hello. I also love the photo of your dad and his guitar.

Reading your post today about your father-in-law brought back great memories of playing games with my grandfather and his great sense of mischievous humor.

Thanks for sharing and reminding me of my own memories and legacy.

Sam said...

Thanks to both of you! Dina, you confirmed some of the things I have felt about both of them. Thank you for your encouragement!