Dad, if you read this, don't go any further.
As promised Joy, I thought I should enlighten you on a pretty major part of my life.
My father is not only there to teach me how to play football (something I don't think he ever did), the facts of life (nope found that out myself) or to teach me to drive (no score there either I'm afraid) but is also one of my closest friends. As with all parent/child relationships we've had our ups and downs, but onlookers now comment regularly on just how alike we are and how much fun we have.
The past 20 years have been hard for pater. Moving from pillar to post for work (or more then likely, women) he has made a steady trek across the world from such diverse places as Llanberis in North Wales, to Stockholm in Sweden, and has finally settled in the place it seems all Americans like to go to die, Florida. He has problems with breathing in this country, Asthma reducing him to a dirty phonecaller in a few hours of arrival here. It would make sense then for him to stay somewhere hot that way easing the stress on his unwell lungs.
He's settled down in a caravan park (or in yankish - trailer park) and has become trailer *trash*. He now drives a pickup, says "y'all," and "kewl." He even has taken to growing his own plants. He has a regular parking space at his local pub, a passion for avoiding such things as onion and garlic, and hates anything that generally gets in the way of his life. Yet still in his moments of madness, he still finds time to go on the lookout for someone to share it with. Yes, the habitual monogomist still finds time for women. After his 4th (or 5th, I lose count) divorce, you would have thought he'd learned his lesson. We make jokes in our family about his pockmarking from people throwing rice at him. He shrugs it off, normally making some reference to my unmarried status.
I don't see him very often. I haven't really for the past 20 years. I do miss him terribly when I don't see him, but the joys of the internet have made the great divide a lot smaller. We stay in touch via instant messengers, email and sometimes the old telephone. The nice situation for me is he now respects my knowledge on some things. Nothing makes a man more proud than when his own father comes to him for advice.
Luvs ya Dad (see, he never taught me to speel iether.)
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