I Got Words on Wednesday

24 Jun

You got faded Polaroids of bellbottoms tucked away in albums, collared shirts still hanging in the closet, and his favorite Robert DeNiro DVD’s on your bookshelf. But there’s still a hole and something is still missing.

That never goes away. The “missing them” part. It doesn’t. Sometimes it grips you so strong you want to hug the picture but worry you’ll crumple it. Sometimes you can’t breathe when you cry and other times you crack up in the middle of the day at a memory that tears make their way to the corners of your eye.

Father’s Day.

Got a roller coaster of ups and downs this weekend but I managed through with stories from my childhood and his. This time I found myself at the empty driving range. Something I haven’t done in years, something we enjoyed doing together. Gold balls never making it passed the 200-yard mark but I didn’t care, was just hanging out and swinging away. Sometimes we didn’t have to talk. We were in the friend zone. Smiling in silence, or laughing at the ridiculousness of the shot shanking to the left. We didn’t even like watching golf on TV or cared who won The Masters. It was us. Hanging out.

Then driving home in silver Tacoma, listening to jazz and retelling stories. Sometimes there’d be a stop at 31 Flavors, just because. There were no Ben & Jerry’s. So rocky road was my jam. But he was more of a Haagen Dazs guy. Still he got ice cream. Sometimes he’d pick strawberry. Sometimes chocolate. He’d try something different. He’d say there are 31 but none of them tasted like Haagen Dazs.

And so this month, for my friend, and in his honor, I did the race. Normally I’d be scaling one of the tallest buildings downtown. 63 stories. 1,393 steps. Do it every year for him, raise money for the American Lung Association to help people with lung disease. But with Covid-19, it was postponed, then postponed again, then onto a virtual platform.

So without my racing bib, crowds of fellow climbers, and the claustrophobic staircases I made my way to The Great Outdoors, with an epic playlist and purpose. The gasping for air. The heart pounding. And the legs involuntarily shaking when I got to the tippy top and end of my climb. All of it was still there and so was my reason.

1,831 steps.

1,831 reasons why my dad was worth the effort.

Hope your Father’s Day was blessed with kids, BBQ, and Hallmark cards of dad on couches.

Buen Camino my friends.


6 Responses to “I Got Words on Wednesday”

  1. susielindau June 25, 2020 at 1:33 PM #

    That was beautiful, Guat. You spoke for all of us who miss our dads. Except for the step part. LOL! Ironically, I did 15,000 steps, (up down all around) on Sunday when hiking with Danny, Courtney, and her boyfriend. Nothing like running straight up!

    • The Guat June 26, 2020 at 10:19 PM #

      15,000 with your altitude is fantastic!! You’re like Rocky. I bet you your view was much better though 🙂 endless stairs although to be fair some had art and views of the lake /)

      • The Guat June 26, 2020 at 10:20 PM #


      • susielindau June 29, 2020 at 7:59 AM #

        Art and lake views sound very nice.

        The higher we climbed the steeper the trail. It was much more strenuous than I planned. We let Courtney’s boyfriend lead the way! LOL!

  2. Sorryless June 27, 2020 at 4:01 PM #

    It’s always a special kind of beauty when you write about your father, Cali. Sending hugs and sunshine your wave.

  3. The Guat June 27, 2020 at 7:08 PM #

    Thanks. It’s always a hard one but it happens from time to time. Hey. Hope you had a good one with the kids.

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