Posted in Fathers, fathers and daughters, Introspection, Parents

My Daddy’s Eyes

 

Beauty is a light in the heart.
“Good morning!” the desk clerk said cheerily.

 It was 6:00 a.m. as I padded into the Hampton Inn lobby sitting area.  Everything was softly lit and I was the only patron wandering the hallway….just the ambiance I needed to sit quietly and wake up.  I had my books and writing pad as I headed straight to the coffee: two pumps of hazelnut creamer, half robust, and half decaf.  I sat down and got situated with my coffee and book when I felt a presence or some kind of energy nearby. Suddenly chilled,  I took a long breath in, savoring the blend of hazelnut and coffee aroma.  Finally, taking a sip, my eyes glanced over the top of my coffee cup and I saw him.  Across the room, directly opposite me, was an older gentleman.  He seemed relaxed as he sat with perfect posture,  looking straight at me.

 He had my Daddy’s eyes.

It felt so strange and yet comforting.  He was dressed in worn khaki pants, a plaid shirt, and a tattered baseball cap.  He smiled at me and I smiled back, but his eyes went right through me.

For a split second, I wanted to cry “Daddy!” and go to him for a hug and a whiff of his Old Spice aftershave.  I wanted to take up where we left off and say, “How are you?”  “Where have you been?”  But, I knew the answers.  So I diverted my eyes back to my book.

I didn’t want to stare.  I just wanted one more peek into my Daddy’s eyes, and when I finally dared to look up….he was gone.  There was a voice inside me that begged to follow him,  yet I sat completely still, totally rattled and at the same time….humbled.

As if on cue, the lobby breakfast area began to come alive with sleepy guests wanting a waffle and hot coffee.  I glanced around, wondering if anyone saw what had just happened…did they too, see the gentleman in the baseball cap and plaid shirt?

I’m not at all sure what to think or how to feel about my encounter this morning.  I feel a strange peace and warmth as I remember it.  Was my Daddy wanting to see me too, just one more time?  

I don’t believe I need to figure it out.  I will just accept it as an embrace from above and carry with me the familiar smile and crinkled eyes as my secret reminder.  Maybe it really is true that the eyes are the window to the soul.

Posted in Clueless, Husbands, Marriage

Clueless

Clueless
Yesterday, as I was standing in the kitchen, I witnessed my husband creating a tasty looking lunch.  He made the most divine looking sandwich!  He put it all together and placed it on a plate, grabbed a napkin and walked off.  “So?”, you’re thinking.   “Good for him!  At least he did it himself!”  All that being true, I cleared my throat…. “Boo?  Forget anything?” I asked.

“Oh yea….chips!”

I sweetly said, “Look down.”

“What??”  “Ohhhhh, I think that was there before I came in the kitchen.”

 

What I’m referring to is that in less than ten minutes, he made a sandwich with chips and fixed a tea.  But, on the floor beneath the counter was a piece of cellophane from the chip bag, a lettuce leaf, small sliver of ham and tiny breadcrumbs.  Don’t get me started on the counter top!  Is it just me or do we all agree, it’s not that hard to pick up what you drop?  He was oblivious, AKA Clueless.

 

In our home as in most households across America, we have a “junk drawer.”  Occasionally my husband will ask, “Do we have any tape?” (or fill in the blank…batteries? Glue?  Rubber Bands?)  I’ll say, “Look in the junk drawer,”  and I will hear the drawer open and then close.  Then I will hear, “Can’t find it!”  Is it just me, or don’t most people know that you must rummage through a junk drawer to find things? Objects might have to be moved around…. It’s a junk drawer, for Pete’s sake!   Is he unobservant or just Clueless?

 

Last Christmas my husband surprised me with one more package.  He was so proud of himself as I tore the paper off of a small pink box.  “I got you some new undies!”, he cheered.  Really?  Really Boo?  Is it just me, or do you agree that most mature women don’t shop at Victoria Secrets?  I cautiously opened the box, secretly hoping they weren’t thongs so I wouldn’t be too embarassed in front of the family.  Gratefully, they weren’t thongs, but they were tiny, flimsy and one pair said Juicy on the rear!  “Thank you??”, I stammered.  Clueless.

 

My husband is always willing to grocery shop for us.  He believes he is more efficient and a better bargain hunter.  Occasionally, I will ask for something specific, like a can of artichoke hearts.  This request will totally baffle him and throw him into a tizzy.  The first time I put canned artichoke hearts on the list, he looked at me quizzically and said, “I don’t know if I can do that.”   I described exactly which aisle, where they were located on the shelf and what the can looked like.  I then said, “Just get the plain ones, not marinaded.”  This situation could go in one of several ways, as you might imagine.  An hour and a half later, he returned home from HEB flustered and grouchy.  “They didn’t have any,”  he said.  “I looked everywhere.”  I wish I hadn’t, but I questioned, “Did you ask someone?”  Well….we all know the answer to that!  Only one word sums it up, Clueless.  

What about the time I broke into tears after shopping for a swimsuit?  He was standing outside the dressing room and said sweetly, “Just pick one, I thought they all looked good; but if we’re going back to Nordstrom’s can we stop at that candy store on the way?”
The longer I live, the more I realize that sometimes being Clueless is a cover up for lack of initiative or dare I say laziness?  But, sometimes being Clueless is just the way it is, it’s the whole Men are from Mars thing. Sometimes Clueless is downright endearing and precious, and sometimes……it’s not.  They don’t mean to be unaware or insensitive, bewildered or foolish; they’re just plain… Clueless!

 

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