Those of you who are friends with me on FaceBook know I've spent the past two weeks in Alaska. Yeah, I've been posting the cheesy photos and keeping a running commentary going on the highlights of the trip. And originally, I'd planned to write this post about my voyage to the last frontier. Trust me--it will happen.
Just not today.
Today, I'm led to share with you a much more personal post.
Today would have been my dad's 87th birthday. He died Dec. 21st.
Sitting in the hospital with Daddy during those long days and longer nights before his death, I passed the quiet time working on the first draft of HIS KIND OF PERFECTION, my October Superromance release. The drama in that story? From the heart, as I allowed the emotions I was experiencing to pour out of me and onto the page.
It helped me deal with the inevitable.
But the man I want to give you a glimpse of today isn't the one who was lying in that hospital bed. I want you to see the one who played croquet with me in our backyard on summer nights. The one who took an afternoon off work when I was eight to take me to Jack the Giant Killer on the last day the movie was showing in our town. I want to share the guy who was the life of every party--the man who could tell a joke with perfect comedic timing. The man who never met a stranger. The most generous person I've ever known. If a needy hand was out, he filled it with his time, his knowledge, or his money--whichever was most appropriate ... and sometimes all three.
He had a wonderful voice, singing in a barbershop quartet for many years and following up that act by becoming a successful square-dance caller in our area. When we traveled in the car, my family sang to pass the miles.
He was an avid reader, and saw to it that I was, too--often buying me books as presents. He kept two or three books going at one time and read every night before he went to sleep.
I do the same.
People say I look like him, and I know they're referring to my facial features. But I hope I look like him beneath the exterior shell as well. He was a swell guy.
When you read my April release (MY WAY BACK TO YOU) you'll find his humor written into the character of Eli Russell. I hope he makes you laugh.
He sure did me, and I miss that every day.
But especially today.