Saturday, June 18, 2016


This one is from last fall. We go up every year, usually in the fall to close, once we helped Dad open camp in the spring. It's always a quick trip, the boy and I are out the door at 7am, at Mom and Dad's by 11, on the lake by noon. We have been lucky with the weather, the first time up was miserable but otherwise we have had sunshine which fits our outlooks and is very apropos. We spend two nights there, preparing the camp for winter and helping Dad with any jobs he has put off through the summer. A few years back we helped him prep for the dock he was going to build the next spring. He was 80 and he clambered amongst the granite and pines and laughed and said 'we're like mountain goats up here'.

 Mom and Dad are up there right now actually, he turns 84 on Father's Day this year, my sister texted me to let me know that I'd have to call up there to give him my regards. They caved in and agreed to a phone up there about a decade ago but it's unlikely that when I call that they will answer. Hopefully I will catch them at dusk, the blackflies will be terrible and they will likely be inside.

 Every year Mom says 'this will be the last year we go up' and every year Dad says no no and every year so far she has been wrong. They had a bear torment them late last summer and it was a bit of a hard go, they're slowing down and it took a bit out of them but when we were up a few weeks ago Mom was raring to get up and so they are there now and will be until the leaves turn in the fall.

 Jenn worries and says what if something happens and I say Christ they're 84 and 83 now what would you have them do sit in their chairs and watch the news until their time comes, let them live the way they want as long as they can. When I was up last time one of my best friends called, he was up as well, his Mom had suffered a massive stroke a few weeks prior and his old man is suffering from dementia and he was picking up the pieces and he couldn't believe I was also in town and we had to go out. I'm going to write about it but we started at his place and the boxes packed and bags of things to be thrown out and the pictures of kids and grandkids still about were heartbreaking and it was all a reminder of you know what and it was the saddest thing I have seen in a long time. We went out and we drank and laughed and enjoyed ourselves because what the hell are you going to do anyhow.

 Dad is slowing down, it's become noticeable the last year or so now. His memory isn't what it was and we worry about that and while he is still strong and hearty he is smaller now and a bit quiet. He still enjoys himself and it's always good times but it weighs on me a bit I can't lie. My Dad is getting old.

 And so it goes. Tomorrow I will call him and wish him a happy birthday and Happy Father's Day and thank him for everything for without him I would not be the man I am today. I lucked out let me tell you. Life is good and he's a big part of why that is and when I celebrate the day with my own kids I will remember that and when I have a beer, or two, as we wander the streets (because that was my request and that is what we will do) I will raise a glass to him.

 Happy Father's Day to all of you Dads out there. Nothing better in the world. Enjoy and make the best of it.


Chappy said...

happy father's day, Pat.

all the best to you and yours!

Gord said...

Had my Dad's 85th celebration yesterday. Family from across Alberta & Texas joined us. Good times.

Glad you still are enjoying both your parents!

docweb said...

Great post as usual Pat. Miss my Dad terribly and try to be as good a dad as he was for us.

I was going to comment on your post on Gord just makes me too upset even thinking about it. And of course I couldn't get tickets. But I did go to three of their concerts. One with each of my kids and one with my brother-in-law so there is that!

Have a great day!

Black Dog said...

Thanks for the comments guys, hope you all had a great day.

Gord - that's awesome, all the best!

docweb - the whole ticket thing was frustrating but I have seen them a number of times as well, five I think, so I think I will leave it at that and watch it on the CBC, I honestly think seeing them in that situation may have been too much. Too poignant.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Pat, appreciate the words on the folks. Always remember that we are old enough now to make our own decisions. Now get off the couch and let's go drinking. F

Black Dog said...

F - Heading out east in a week, upon the return we're on. Also will have an more fitting tribute to L&F in post on our night out with the Markic. Talk soon.