Sunday, April 01, 2007

Speaking of crying

this is it for the downer posts. I swear.

Failed attempt at acquiring Japanese battle flag from WWII (for grandchild that actually knows where Japan is on the fucking map) aside, my mom did well today.

Apparently my grandparents bought a lot of records, and no one else wanted them, so my rock snob mommy grabbed 'em.

Y'all, I'll go through them later, but the records include "Stand By Your Man" by Tammy
Wynette- unopened. Sinatra's soundtrack for "The Americanization Of Emily." I had to sit down whilst looking at them. She's going back for more tomorrow.

So here's the downer part. Dad grabbed my grandpa's dress trench coat for me. What a guy! Great condition, probably late 1950's, button-out wool liner, the whole 9 yards.

But the thing is, when I tried it on 15 minutes ago, I reached into the pockets, and found a linen hankerchief. And it smelled like Grandpa. Like stolen smokes, Old Style Light and incense. Like falling asleep during Mass, pretending to read the Missalette. Like hiding beers in the spring house.

Like calling all his grandchildren, in an affectionate way, "You old snake."

Like taking us through the timber (forest) that was on our land, and telling his budding naturalist grandkids what kinds of trees we had, and where to find the best Morel mushrooms and Bittersweet. What kind of wildflowers grew there. What animal tracks we were seeing. And most importantly, how we should keep out of the caves in the crick (creek) because there were Rattlesnakes there.

Like telling us stories about his great-grandpa, Joab, who had a lawyer on retainer at all times, because he was constantly shooting the neighbor lady's hat off of her head or running an illegal still.

How he always called my grandma, even when Alzheimers took her mind, "Mom."

And it broke my heart when it suddenly hit me that I won't see the old coot anymore. Ever. He's been gone since September, and now it's hitting me. God, it sucks when people you love leave.

Don't mind me, I'll just be the weepy mess in the corner.


Kazza said...

Great score on the coat and the records. Nice to see that some of the things made their way to the person who would appreciate them. Your grandparents would like that.

Your grandfather sounded like a really cool guy and I'm sorry you've lost him. My grandpa is 90 now and the thought of not having him around just kills me. I don't want to be an adult!

queen bee said...

your stories animate 'the old coot' so well. such character! i see where you get it from ;)