It was a wonderful time, summer 2010. Mom and dad were out to visit. Mom had recovered sufficiently from her falls that she could swim again. Growing up, swimming had been a passion for both my folks and it transferred to my brother and me. Here we sit across the pond on an old dock.We had swum after lunch. Remember that rule that you had to wait an hour after eating to swim? The old wives tales we believed in the Sixties! Both my folks were alive and not suffering yet. Both my dogs, Ty and Mak, were with me. I was pretty healthy and solid back then married to a beautiful, brilliant wife, a retired United States Marine captain.After swimming we adjourned back to my place where I whipped up iced coffee/caramel drinks for my folks in the blender. They were always big fans those drinks.
As an aside, you can see in the photo below the chain I used to secure Mak to a concrete block under the couch when my parents would arrive. I didn’t wanting him bowling them over in exuberance.After lunch, the swim and iced coffee, I brought out my digital audio journal and mom and dad reminisced about childhood vacations. The narrative is a mishmash of French and English typical of the way we talked at home. Here my dad recounts events that had my mom laughing.Things were different in childhood days – much simpler. Though I never felt poor, they relayed that we’d driven all the way to Canada and on the return had just enough money for gas. Nothing extra. No credit cards. Zip. Somewhere, hours from home, we stopped to eat at a rest area picnic table. Our meal was cold, leftover summer squash from a friend’s garden… and that’s it. We had nothing else to eat and no money to buy anything until we arrived back home. This was with two children in a station wagon and a homemade trailer attached to the back bumper. Other people in the rest area saw us and in my mom’s words “took pity” on us and offered my parents some coffee. Americans are world renowned for showing kindness and helping strangers.
It was a different time and world. My brother and I were incredibly fortunate to have had such loving people as parents.