aamusedinatx: (mamamo)
I just spoke to my Daddy. Yeah, I'm nearly 45 and when I talk to my father he's still "Daddy." And, if I need anything from him or I need to deflect an argument, all I have to do is say "Daddy" and he's toast :). I'm his first born and his 'only son'. I'm the tomboy who crawled on, in, and under houses with him during projects. I hung out on the fender of the car and pestered him endlessly while he did maintenance. I am the one who went camping, hiking, and fishing with him. I climbed trees, beat up boys, loved on animals and rarely behaved myself.

Things I learned from my Daddy:

1. My love for reading. I'd taught myself how to read by about age 4 but it was my father's constant reading that taught me to love it. In 1969 he was home recovering from back surgery. I was pestering him so much that he handed me Jules Verne's "20,000 Leagues Under the Sea" and Heinlein's "Have Spacesuit, Will Travel." I disappeared for a day and then came back and asked for more. Both of us spend more than our weight each year in books.

2. The outdoors. My father is a Texas boy who loves being outside in any weather. A gentleman farmer, he taught me a love of plants wild and domestic. He taught me the names of birds, the animals of the forest, and the fish in the streams and lakes around us. He taught me how to fish. While he won medals as a sharpshooter in the Navy he couldn't stand hunting so I learned that elsewhere.

3. DIY. I'm handy and creative with projects around the house because of my dad; which is a bit of a giggle since my dad really WANTS to be handy but isn't. He's an effin rocket scientist when it comes to nuclear engineering but it once took him five HOURS to hang a simple ceiling fan!

4. When I was eight and helping him build a pantry for our house in Virginia, I hit my thumb with the hammer and swore a blue streak. My dad just watched me do it, checked to make sure I hadn't broken my thumb, and then said "yeah, I know kiddo--just don't let your mother hear you say that."

5. Breakfast. Breakfast is a meal for any time of day. On the rare occasions dad was home alone with us at night dinner was french toast or waffles--home made too! I also learned that powdered donuts and Miller Lite was the best breakfast to be had at 4:30am on a bass boat in some lake in Texas. Me, Dad and my Uncle Bill would go fishing. I'd watch these two old navy mates grumble over their tangled lines and argue over whose lure was best and never bat an eye as I helped myself to yet another beer--at age 14.

6. Travel. Join the Navy, See the World. Yup...we did. That and more. Every time we transferred if we could drive to it we did. That way we could visit places en-route that we wouldn't see otherwise. My father never drove past a historical marker (we call them hysterical markers). He taught me that the Journey is the joy and that detours and getting lost were simply opportunities to discover new things. To this day I have an excellent sense of direction, a sense of where I am, a fearless joy for traveling to new places I've never seen and where I know no one. I'm still traveling.

7. History. My father is a history nut. I've seen every civil war battlefield in the US--some of them more than a few times. Revolutionary war sites as well, as far north as Upstate New York. While my father celebrates military history, I celebrate world history and archeology much more. Still, along with my love of books and learning, my absorption of history and my passion to know MORE comes from Dad.

8. Intelligence. My dad blew the bell curve on his Navy entrance exam in 1954. He was in boot camp before he could even blink--that farm boy trying to escape little ol' Commerce, Texas. Ten years later he was rubbing shoulders with Fulbrights, Kennedys and more while working at the State Department in DC. He's written books on nuclear engineering that were used in Annapolis even though he himself never went to Annapolis and retired a Non-com-Chief Petty Officer. While I didn't inherit his gift of science and math, my IQ comes from him and my passion for learning.

9. Depression. I get my mild bi-polar disorder from him too but that's okay, it helps me understand him far better than I would otherwise. Watching him suffer quietly, stoically is also what made me determined to get help for mine.

For all the battlegrounds that I have shared over the years with my Mother, my Father was there, letting me fight for myself, but backing me up when it counted and interceding when he could. He's a good man to have at yer back and I love him to bits. When he's gone I will truly feel myself an orphan, but I'll also be what he's made me: an independent, intelligent, funny, strong-willed woman who is stubborn, cynicial, and who has a love for life that is as wide and deep as the oceans he sailed.

Happy Father's Day, Daddy.
aamusedinatx: (coffeeblack)
And how do I feel? Well, other than a bit sleepy still I'm actually feeling okay, better, my head doesn't feel like it's stuffed with sand or cotton any more.

Dr Strangelove didn't make it over. I wasn't worried as it was one of those 'open' invites as in: "I'm just going to sit on my patio and drink till I fall over, join me if you'd like."

Just into my 2nd glass of Mojito my cell phone rang. The Mad Scientist and the Kitten With a Whip (she's home!! YAH!!) called to see if they could come by and show me photos of their Guatemala trip and bring me a gift they'd gotten while over there. And so we were three--four if you count dork doggie, six if you count the two cats who kept fishing their furry paws under the screen door trying to get out and join the party!

For about 3 hours we sat in the warm evening knocking back Rum and eating chips and salsa while we traded stories of their trip, photos from Kit's iBook, oohing and awing over the non-traditional and very pretty silver ring she got when MS proposed to her, which was accompanied by the usual tales of "how he popped the question."

They brought me a cigar shaped stick of cardamon flavored chocolate--the lethal kind, you know that's 85% PURE cocoa paste! YUM. They also gave me a 1/2 lb of whole bean Guatemalan Organic Coffee that smells OUT OF THIS WORLD! It comes in a wonderfully bright woven cotton pouch that I can keep once the coffee is done. I was going to have some this morning, but alas, my bean grinder is at the office.

Eventually we got cool; them more than me because they've just spent weeks in a tropical climate, and trooped inside. I showed them the Tantra Chair web site and they helped drag the chair towards the center of the room and try a few of the poses. They were curious if it would work for them since the Mad Scientist is nearly 6 feet tall and Kit, like me, is only about 5'3". Even with clothes on it worked well! LOL and now another promise from me to 'rent out the chair' for fun. (hee hee...I'm going to have to start a reservation list!)

One of the priceless announcements last night was that The Mad Scientist has a new Lab Assistant up on the hill named Igor. Seriously...his name is IGOR. I howled when I heard that. "Bring me the brain, Igor!". I'm so going Young Frankenstein on his ass when I meet him!

Brunch this morning with Dr. Strangelove (confirmed), sunshine, dozing animals, a long walk with the dog, someone next door is playing harmonica. I feel half way decent today. It's going to be a good Sunday. Father's Day Sunday and so Happy Father's Day to all you Dad's out there. I've already called mine. He's going to lunch with my sister and brother in law today.

Now pardon me while I go shave the rum-fur off my tongue.

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aamusedinatx

May 2013

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