Wednesday, April 29, 2009

My Dad Left Me a Present on His Birthday

Today would have been my dad's 95th birthday. You'd think each year would be easier but, since his passing in 1997, I still miss him as much as the day he died. It was his gentle and forgiving nature that I admired most. He chose to see only good in everyone he met.

I still have many regrets regarding my dad. For example, I regret not taking the time to let him teach me how to play the guitar. I remember my aunt telling me matter of factly, "you have the greatest teacher in the world and you need to take advantage of it". I never did. I was always too busy running through the woods that surrounded our house. But, he seemed to take some satisfaction of my interest in all things living and he never seemed to mind building yet another cage for whatever came out of the woods with me.

When the day came to make the now infamous choice for my Christmas present one year, I took a 20 gallon aquarium over a Hoffner bass guitar. I refer to that day as "my fork in the road". I went down the "nature" road and turned my back on the "learning to play the guitar" road. He never seemed to mind. I think that's why he dropped yet another present in my lap this morning on his birthday. What better way to let me know he's still not upset with the road I chose.

The Campbell Clan in December of 1957

Rescued From the Pool This Morning

Happy Birthday Papa! Thanks for the 'possum!


Darlene said...

You wrote a beautiful tribute to your dad. I know that he would be so proud. I always enjoyed spending time with him and listening to him talk about about how things were 'back then'.

Steve's girl said...

What a sweet post! It sounds like your dad was a very special person and I am sure he was proud you chose to follow your own passion... after all isn't that what we all want for our kids? Just think of all the critters that have benefited from your choice to explore the woods instead of play the guitar!

Anonymous said...

I like it! That's cool! Looking forward to seeing ya'll in June! Take care.


Beth said...

As usual you write a great story. You do have a way with words.

Nice to remember such wonderful things about your dad.

I take it you were the charming babe in arms?

Jungle Pete said...

That got me a little teary eyed. Don't tell anyone.

XXXX said...

Very Nice Jim. I really enjoyed it! Your writing is as good as ever!

Jim said...

Thanks for the kind words everyone!

L.A. Mitchell said...

Awesome post, Jim. What a cutie in your pool. Somehow I can't picture you playing and crooning, but I can see you with a viper wrapped around your arm :)

Georgia said...

That made me cry, I think your dad would be proud of you!

Plus that lil critter is very cute!