Today is the first anniversary of my father’s death.
The last time I saw my father was over a year ago. Since then, all I’ve had are pictures and the memory of the sound of his voice. I have no home movies, no audio tapes. Just memories that will fade with time, eventually to the point where I can barely remember him.
I no longer speak of Dad in the way I used to. Now it’s with more reverence, and with more humour. For some reason, I’ve gotten into the habit of using phrases that are prefaced with: “As my father used to say…”, even if I know full well he never said those things. I attribute many of the things I know to him — most of my home maintenance and renovation skills (most of which, admittedly, is unproven), my (limited) knowledge of automobile mechanics, some of my financial sense (though I have to give most credit to Cathy, also known as my financial advisor), my love of adventure, my desire to travel, and a purpose in life.
Dad didn’t teach me all these things. I learn a lot through observation. (Hence, my “Observer” moniker.) And I certainly cannot mention learning without mentioning Mom. She taught me the rules of life, probably the hardest rules to learn. Mom knew me better as a child than I knew myself.
It’s been a year without my father. And it’s been a strange year. A couple of months ago, my family started discussing the possibility of what to do on the anniversary. There had been talk of Las Vegas. Not Dad’s favourite place, but I’m sure he’d appreciate the need for celebration rather than mourning. Dad never was a big fan of that.
Hopefully, today will pass without notice. I have no plans to call anyone in my family. Unless I need to. Today, I think all that I may do is find a quiet corner of a bar or pub somewhere, and have a glass of Scotch in my father’s name.