Saturday, June 17, 2017

Fathers Day, How The Years Go By.

   Certainly, the man that has most influenced me in life has been my Father. Although he has been gone for 18 years, more so than ever, I hear his voice in my words, see his features in the mirror, his humor in my stories, and his swearing when things go sideways.
   He spent his formative pre-war years at the family's logging camp at the head of Harrison Lake, driving off-road logging trucks before taking over management of the old Abbotsford Lumber Co. and dabbling here and there in real estate and mineral exploration over the years. He flew small planes, shot clay-pigeons and golfed for fun. He retired earlier than most, about the time his ticker started giving him problems. He did alright in life although he never got rich. He said once that to make a million dollars you had to be prepared to step on some toes along the way, and it was not in his make-up.
   Not always patient with us kids in the early years, or so we all thought at the time, we all had a fear of him which we have come to see as nothing more than a respect for authority, just like he had growing up. But inside the man was a huge soft-core. When I was quite young, I recall him taking me around town and being impressed that men respected him and sought out his company, and to me he was ten feet tall.
It was a point of pride when  I grew older and walking into stores having the owner greet me an say,
"Your Bill's boy."
   He gave me the two best pieces of advice I ever got in life. One was in the early 1960's while watching ABC Wide World Of Sports one Saturday afternoon. There was a motorcycle race on, it was an uncommon event to be shown on TV then and I was riveted to the set and what appeared to be organized mayhem, ideas already forming in my nine year old head.
"You see that." he said, bringing me out my trance and pointing out the obvious,
"The riders that keep their feet on the pegs stay under control."
And they did too. It was advice that I never forgot and when I grew older, I always kept my feet on the pegs. Still.
   An avid reader and history buff, in later years he was most often to be found with a good book in the recliner and a cat curled up on his lap, and often joked that he was just a warm spot for a cat to sleep.
He died earlier than most, 10 years older than I am now. The last time I saw him was shortly before he left, and he gave me the other most valuable piece of advice I've ever had. He asked if I had been doing any writing.
I said I hadn't been doing much lately and kind of sloughed-off the question.
He looked me in the eye and said, "Jesus man, you got to write."
And those were the last words he spoke to me.
 1956, me at 2, up on the Big Guy's desk at Abbotsford Lumber Co.

 1969, me at 15, Westwood racetrack.

1980, me at 26, Dad visiting the Yukon gold-mine.

2002, me at 48. He missed meeting his granddaughter Caitlin by a couple years.

   Anyways. Happy Father's Day Dad. I wish the bugger was still around. Just once more, I'd like a chance to sit down and ask a few more questions.
I know how I'm going to spend part of Fathers Day this year. 
Like a lot of days, there on the recliner, with a good book, and a cat curled on my lap. 
A warm spot for a cat to sleep.




Monday, June 12, 2017

A Post For Anna.

    I've been having myself another one of my spells where I get distracted from posting something on here. I believe I set a record this time and it has been almost 3 months. Sometimes it gets to be a chore, or a job, both of which I've tried hard to avoid in life. I often ask myself what I get by keeping it up, and for awhile seriously considered over time dismantling the site and moving on to other things. 
   So I quit worrying about the old blog-site for awhile. I was getting kind of use to not buggering around with it and was starting to think probably no-one would even notice when a week ago I received an email one morning. It was from a reader in Sweden whom has left a comment in the past. Almost apologetically, and I suspect without a certain amount apprehension she inquired if I was alright, fearing I had suffered another heart attack.
   She might have speculated on the possibility of Mr. blog site falling prey to a bear attack, falling a tree on his dumb self, fell out of a tree, cut his head off with the chain-saw, stumbled into the fast moving river, got jumped by the cougar, bucked-off his motorcycle, fell into the creek checking his intake-screen and went over the falls, went senile and forgot his blog password, or maybe just got hauled off and put in a home somewhere. 
And there's nothing goddamn worse then checking some guy's blog to find the a-hole hasn't posted anything in months!
She didn't put it in those exact words, but I knew what she was thinking.
   So, to Anna in Sweden, I am fine as can be expected with this many miles on me, both mentally and physically. 
In my opinion of course, but they say you are always the last to know. 
   In closing, she mentioned some stories posted in the past, a few she found downright interesting, several had made her 'laugh out loud!' she said, and one in particular made her weep.
Which I guess is about the best compliment an on-leave blogster can hope for.
So I think I might just blow the cob-webs off the old lap-top and ease myself back into the job here at the Hotspring Lodge editorial desk.
Writing my blog password down someplace might be a good idea too.