Saturday, November 07, 2009
(Red) Crocs on land
Laval, QC, August 2009
[Click here for more red-themed goodness]
Our youngest son, Noah, has what we like to call puppy feet. Big feet for his size that we know he'll eventually grow into. They make an already sweet boy that much sweeter. His red Crocs are another Noah hallmark: unpretentious, practical, sometimes loud, oh so cute and bound to make even complete strangers smile.
As he swam in the outdoor pool at his grandparents' building, I grabbed this quick, pseudo-artsy picture because I liked the color and texture. In retrospect, however, the picture, like so many others that I took on that last trip home before my father died, has taken on an additional layer of meaning.
My father loved this pool, and came here even when he wasn't feeling well to soak up the blink-and-it's-gone summer weather and duke it out with his neighbors on whatever political issue was bugging him that day. Before our brood would leave London for a visit to Montreal, he'd make sure we were bringing our bathing suits, because this was where he wanted to spend time with his grandchildren. I've got to believe that this unassuming slice of concrete, water, trees and grass will also hold many memories for our kids as they grow into adults.
It's not as if our family hasn't been there before. For me and my maternal grandfather, that memorable place was the park in front of his house. We'd sit on the benches in the thick forest at the edge of it and watch the squirrels scamper about. He'd tell me stories and I'd do my best to keep up with him. It was one of the few places in the world where I knew I could always return and feel as if I was right back there with him. And even today, as I drive by this very park on the way home from the hospital where I practically grew up, I flash back to these long-ago moments and think of how lucky I am to have such memories.
I hope we've done a good enough job with our own kids that they see this place in a similar light, and hold onto their grandfather as I have held onto mine.
Your turn: From generation to generation. Why do these connections matter so?