Monday, March 22, 2010

One week in March

I find it a struggle at times to satisfy my desire for life. Experiences, new and old, are what I seek out. When I find them I humbly attempt to absorb them most times. Others rush by before I even realize what has just glanced off or through my existence.

Just this past week I have shared my son’s first spring break with him. In that week I took him, his Uncle and Grandfather all to a hockey game together. We went ice skating together, planted a garden, watched movies, had a breakdown or two, walked the dogs, went sledding, cooked dinner, fell asleep on the couch with each other and so much more. Those are only the experiences I shared with my son.

My wife and I shared a romantic overnight get away in downtown Dallas. We took in a relaxed early dinner of pizza and wine on a nice patio on a lovely afternoon before checking in to an eloquently redone classic hotel in the Uptown area. From there we strolled over to experience the offerings of the Black Eyed Peas. Our neighbors for the show included a couple with their ten year old daughter, two sisters (one of who runs half marathons), a single mom with her pre teen son and more than enough screaming twenty some-things’ and their testosterone filled boy candy. The show was decent: the experience with my wife wonderful.

A relaxed night’s sleep later we awoke to a cold morning and equally cold shower to compliment it. Neither dampened our spirits as we made our way to Arlington for breakfast together. On thankful stomachs we were greeted at the door of my parent’s with a happy joyful son who was as happy to see us as he was to spend an evening with two of his favorite people and one of his favorite dogs.

Sunday evening after dropping the young man off at his mothers the opportunity to share a couple of hours with my brother and his fiancĂ© gathered me. Though two hours time separated my arrival to the latter, I found reflection in a walk around an old friend, Veteran’s Park. While there I shared a cheerful conversation with my daughter as she told me about her spring break at her father’s: a happy yet somewhat indifferent description of a camping excursion that included a cabin, shooting a b. b. gun, fishing, and more. Encouraging and seeking her true highlight, she told me seeing the movie “Diary of a Whimp” was her favorite time over spring break. With sincerity I apologized I was not home (she returns the same time I return the young man) and told her I was happy she was home and I would be home later after visiting with Uncle Matt. I traveled on to consume a latte and browse titles at a nearby book store before arriving at previously mentioned local.

That merely summarizes the highlights of the week. I also enjoyed: more than one midnight walk, preparing meals, doing laundry, coaching my runners, some light reading, sleeping in, staying up late, cheering on thousands of runners on a Sunday morning, paying bills, video games, conversations with friends, moments shared with family and time; time to think reflect and pursue.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Starting Line

I have not done this in a while. At least not since I deleted a social networking page profile that was well a symbol of what people want to be viewed as more so than perhaps who they really are.

I occasionally shared my thoughts on that site's blog. Sometimes political thoughts, sometimes abstract, some dark comedy, and almost all those thoughts where laced with a level of sincerity. Thanks to a friend and co-worker/employee I am here embracing the opportunity to express similar thoughts on a site that appears to be less about popularity and more about: inspiration be it good, bad, or ugly as well as pure thought invoking sincerity. Of course you will inevitably sample some filler items on the menu before discovering the finer offerings any one venue may have to offer: so keep a glass of water and a piece of ginger near by for the occasional palette cleanser.

As for today, a Wednesday evening is my starting line. For a dear friend of my Dad, I'd say Father but Dad is more appropriate, today was his finish line. Bobby Payette passed this morning. He was a man who was a bit of a mentor to my Dad and as he put it when he called me at work tonight to tell me "the best best best friend I ever had isn't with us anymore." Then he asked if I knew who he was talking about. My heart stopped at first, no discredit to Bobby's importance to me, and I feared my Mom had passed unexpectedly but I paused for a moment and knew my Dad would be far more distraught and responded "Bobby."

Bobby helped my Dad start his landscaping business over 25 years ago. They built many of the cross-tie walls at Six Flags and for several years did annual maintenance on the many trees enhancing the amusement park. Bobby almost religiously brought donuts to our house on Friday mornings for my two younger brothers and I. He was always warm. He was a shorter gentleman with a classic Texas handlebar mustache of fine grey hair complimented by a soft head of grey hair. He was a working man though so his hands were calloused and his grip was firm. He was always pleasant, always, even when I saw him after he and my father had shared a few drinks at the end of a hard days work. This is how I remember Bobby. I had not seen him in several years. The last time I saw him the many days of hard labor were showing their toll on this fine Southern man. My dad said it best tonight when he told me in a shaky voice "He was one of the realest people I ever knew." For some this may seem like a weird or even silly comment. In a world of fads, fashion, binge diets, myspace, facebook, plastic surgery and so many more superficial matters this is a rare compliment "to be a real person".

close your eyes and see, who you really are.