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lostpurl

Lost in a sea of yarn and needles. Lusting after handmade socks and all things lacy

 

Everyday Was Father's Day

When I was a very little girl, we lived in a 3 floor apartment building in Brooklyn New York. One night, very late my Dad woke me up. He helped me into my bathrobe and slippers. Shushed me and grabbed up my quilt. We went quietly out the door and up the stairs to the roof. He has already spread out newspapers on the tar roof. There was a thermos of hot chocolate. Dad pointed up to the sky and handed me his prized binoculars. A total eclipse of the moon. Wrapped up in my quilt leaning against my Dad and sipping hot chocolate we watched the moon vanish. In a low voice my Dad recited the 8th Psalm
When I consider the heavens,the work of your hands.
The moon and stars, which you created
What is man, that you take thought of him?
Or the son of man that you love him?

I must have drifted in and out of sleep. Each time I woke up Dad was there watching the show in the sky. In the distance you could hear the city sounds, but even they seem muted. It was magic. In time the full moon returned and Dad took me back to my room. He brought down my quilt and tucked me in for the night. The next day he let me stay home from school. Although my Mom was not sure star gazing was a reason for missing school. Dad went to work as usual.
My parents met late in life. And to be honest they would have been just as happy if they never had children. They were so in love with each other. But Dad took to having children like a natural. He never talked down to children. And he expected we would be just as curious and interested in the world around us as he was.
When I was around 12 my Dad ground the glass for a telescope lens. I got to help. My father had the grand idea of cutting a hole in the roof of their house in Long Island and putting in a clear dome. Then mounting an electric telescope with camera. My Mom thought it would probably let in the rain. Sadly it never got to happen. My Dad had a massive stroke. He wanted to die, but my Mother dragged him onward for 10 more years. She could not bare to be parted from him.
I never heard my father raise him voice in anger. He never hit us. All he had to do was look you in the eye, with one eyebrow raised. You had this strange urge to explain yourself. It was spooky. His idea of punishment was to take a book out of his extensive library of second hand books and have you memorize something. Usually poetry. You also had to give a summery of what it was about. This did backfire on him a bit, when I had to memorize extensive bits of Hiawatha. I felt I should share this with any guests my parents had :-}
He was a kind and gentle man. He always stood up when my giggly teenage girlfriends showed up. Helped them on or off with their coats. He always took my arm at street crossings and walked on the outside.
Now I am sure you are wondering if this paragon had any faults. My father had no idea of time. This doesn't mean much, unless you are waiting for him after work in three inch heels. When he did wander up, and you asked through gritted teeth where he had been. He looked very surprised to learn he was late. Meanwhile your feet are throbbing like drums. In spite of his many stellar qualities, I was sometimes sorely tempted to push him under a bus. :-} No matter how far back we pushed the clock, we were always late.
My Dad who was from Barbados had a very British sense of humour, which alas floated over the heads of most people. Including my mother. She laughed but she wasn't sure why. This led to him giving us outlandish answers to questions like "Where did you meet Mom?" "Ahh, she was a go go dancer in a glass cage, I rescued her." My brother repeated that story at school, when his class had to tell something about your parents. My mother nearly died. She was a short chubby lady and president of the PTA.
Rock on Dad, you are a star
ps Daddy if you are reading,I wouldn't have really pushed you under a bus. I still have your book on the Qualities of soap bubbles. And you were right about that guy. I should have pushed HIM under a bus.

sorry I haven't been around much. I haven't been feeling full of mojo of any kind.