Wednesday, September 5, 2012

god be with you

my grandfather was a barrel-chested pillar of a man who, legend has it, could bear-hug a refrigerator and move it all by himself.

when i was a child he had a beautiful garden filled with big flowers and delicious vegetables and he would wake up in the middle of the night to irrigate it according to the county water schedule.

his grilled turkey, marinated in sprite (!), is one of the most delicious things there is to eat.

he refused to drive ford cars, but always had a ford pick-up truck.

my grandfather was generous. with gifts, yes, but also with praise and love. he might not have understood what you were doing, he might not have understood why, but he was always always so proud. and he told you so every time he talked to you.

my grandfather was a great patriarch. he prayed over meals and over his family. he loved his sweetheart and, though he might not have said it in so many words, i think it is safe to say that the legacy of his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren is the thing that gave him the most pride and joy.

he and my grandmother came all the way to boston when i graduated from college. it was a big day for me, but it seemed almost like it was a bigger day for them. the fact that they would come so far and sit in the hot sun to watch me, as a little speck, get my college diploma, taught me a lot about how important that accomplishment was.

one time we begged for a novelty set of glasses from pizza hut that had scenes from "the great muppet caper" on them. he bought them. every year on the fourth of july he handed us a wad of cash so we could buy a huge stash of (mostly legal) fireworks to set off in the driveway once the sun had gone down.

on summer nights in the old house, we would sit out on the front patio, under the glow and sizzle of the bug zapper. on those nights, and at all other times, grandpa was a man of few words but those words always included, "i love you." at the end of every conversation, every phone call, it was the same. i love you.

we miss you, grandpa. and we love you, too.

1 comment:

Mom said...

Very sweet darling. Thank you.