I drove my 87-year-old dad to Florida this past week. I really wasn’t looking forward to the 18 hours of his driving, but it needed to be done. Unfortunately over the years, while we haven’t drifted apart, we just haven’t spent any time together for the past twenty or so years. So, I packed the few things I could carry with me on my return flight, got into the car when I was ordered to and hoped for the best.
We started out arguing about the route to take. He wanted the western route through Alabama, and I wanted the eastern route through Cincinnati. I finally won the argument by telling him, he hadn’t seen his granddaughter’s house since she moved, and it would be nice to stop and spend the night. He agreed so off to Cincinnati we went. That was the beginning of a great time together.
Dad showed me where my Great Uncle Lloyd lived in Pleasant Mills, then he showed me where his best friend died in a car accident when he was 4 years old. We spoke about mom and her fight with cancer and how she took care of the family while he worked over the years. We spoke of his time in the Navy during the Korean War and my time in South America working against the drug cartels. We spent hours remembering friends and family members we’ve lost over the years and how they effected our lives.
Before we knew it our time was over. We opened his trailer up and on the 30th of December he drove me to the Clearwater/St Pete Airport (Hi Amy). 18 hours well spent.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
SFC Al Conrad,