Tuesday, July 5, 2011

These Fragile Times Should Never Slip Us By...

It seems to me a crime that we should age
These fragile times should never slip us by
A time you never can or shall erase
As friends together watch their childhood fly ... Friends - Elton John

I remember my dad saying that one of the signs of aging is that your "wedding shoes" become funeral shoes. Those fancy black shoes he had to wear for the weddings of his children, were worn more and more for funeral masses and rosaries as he got older. Except for the aches and pains, I haven't really minded the actual aging process. It's becoming more apparent as time passes, however, that I'm not the only one aging. The worse part of getting older is that our friends and family, especially those even older than us, are also aging. And dying.

In February, it was Mark's brother Chuck. Last week, it was my brother-in-law, my sister's husband Richard Fairhurst. Rich had a few years on me and I loved to remind him he graduated from high school the year I was born. He was a water engineer for the City of Santa Cruz at a time when my sister, Mark, Mark's mom and I all worked for the City. Yeah, nepotizz! He was a big man (6'6"-ish?) that married my sister, Carol, just two months after Mark and I got married in 1975 which means they would have celebrated their 36th anniversary in September. He treated my sister like a queen. But when I think of Richard, I think of this trip.
1977. Richard and Carol in their pickup, Mark and I in our van. Communicating by CB on a road trip north into Idaho to visit my my brother and his family then on to Yellowstone. I decided not to clean up the yellow of these shots because, that's what thirty years in a magnetic photo album does to a photo. But the memories are clear. Richard and I each took at least a dozen shots of this woolly beast. He and I crept closer and closer, taking a shot each time we stopped while Mark and Carol stood by the cars.."You guys...that's close enough. Watch out....he might charge you....you GUYS!". Rich and I were sure we could get just one more shot. We can get closer.....click...click...click. Finally our common sense must have told us Mr. Bison could actually catch us though, more likely it would catch ME since Richard's legs would have surely out run mine. We got back to the cars and laughed.....

The top photo? Can you guess where? Yep, Idaho border. The sign was apparently out for repair leaving us without a photo op at the border so we improvised with Richard being the obvious choice for the panhandle.

This adorable child would be Monica with her Uncle Richard. He was loving. And kind. A giant of a man and a cheek-pincher. I know my girls and their cousins will miss Uncle Richard's cheek pinching. I know we all will miss him terribly. I do already.


Monica... That One Girl said...


Kristabel said...

I'm so sorry for your losses. What a sweet photo!

The Editors said...

Hey, what's this? A new local blog