My Old Man

This particular post was written the other day (before the whole surgery deal) and I wanted to share it with you. It’s been “untouched” since then, I just hadn’t published it yet.

I was drifting off to sleep on Monday night and had the most random memory pop into my head while heading to la-la land.

The winter before I got out of the Navy (would have been Holidays of 2000), I was hanging out with my Father for the day. We were trying to come up with something cool to do that would let us “bond”. We decided upon hunting because we had never done it together before. We were really sad hunters. The only animal around the area was rabbits and the only weapons we had were a pellet gun and a 22 caliber rifle. We loaded up and headed out to the acreage that my father was living at at the time. (For the PETA members out there, we never found any rabbits anyway. Mostly just hung out and walked around with guns).

The snow on that cold Nebraska day was a bleached white and covered the ground as we trudged through, catching up on how things were going in each others’ life. Every so often, we would spy something that we thought was a rabbit (or some random creature on the hillside) and raise the guns. Neither of us had any hunter’s blood in us, as I recall, and we never ended up hitting anything and never even really gave it much effort. Just seemed like a “guy” thing to do, go hunting together father-and-son.

That is a really fond memory of my father, one of the greatest men I’ve ever known. What used to be a rough, tough exterior has given way to a gentler man who has aged well (he has girls around MY age that get all googly-eyed around him). A man who has his shortcomings like all people, some of which I’ve inherited (money management is not a strong point although I’m doing better, and since I’ve been married my memory of little things here and there seems to have gone the way of the dodo as well), his good heart and the ability (sorry to break out the clichés here) to give you the shirt off his back have made him my number one hero.

Originally posted Thu, 01-06-05


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