Saturday, July 2, 2022

Almost a firecracker


Happy Saturday! Today would have been my Daddy's 90th birthday. It's so hard to believe he's been gone for 11 years now. I sure miss him. He used to always tease and say he was almost a firecracker. He loved the fourth of July and would always shoot off black cats and M80s. Mama was always afraid he was going to blow his hand off because he'd wait until the last minute to throw the firecracker. He loved to put them in tin cans too to hear the loud bang. He would laugh and laugh. Of course, we only got to hold sparklers, but it was so fun to see his boyish excitement over something so simple. 

He'd always stop at roadside stands a few weeks before the holiday to buy fireworks. His parents used to live in Griffin GA which was a little mill town. No one there made more than probably 10,000 a year if that, so little luxuries meant everything. 

On the fourth of July, we'd usually fire up a little charcoal grill in the backyard and cook hotdogs and hamburgers. It was a big deal because we didn't get to do things like that often. Daddy loved cooking out, too. I can still see him shirtless, in his jeans and loafers with his Brylcreem slicked back hair. He'd be sweating like a pig but he loved every minute of it. 

My brother, sister, and I would be running around the yard barefoot playing tag or chase or something and Mama would come out occasionally with her apron tied around her waist to oversee what was happening. 

When it was time to eat, we'd usually go inside because the bugs were bad in the summer, but sometimes, we'd get to eat outside. That was a treat, especially when we had a ripe, juicy watermelon for dessert. Daddy taught us to spit the seeds and we had a blast with red juice running down our chins and yellow jackets buzzing all around. 

There are so many things I remember about him. He was so fun loving but also had a temper at times. I miss him and think of him fondly. 

Losing parents is hard. Even when you're grown and know death is coming, there comes a time when you'd give anything to hear their voice again, to feel their touch, or just sit in their presence. 

Daddy, you were a firecracker in my book and always will be! You were something else! You lit up my sky with your smile.  

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