Monday, December 12, 2011

My daddy as Buddha

Some of us are lucky enough to be able to look back on our fathers as "heroic" but I'll go a bit further and add that, for over a decade now, I've also thought of him as a "Buddha." Strong but silent, patient and enduring, and always kind and helpful. In this early picture, taken in the 1960s, he looks to me like the James West character of the tv series "Wild, Wild West." But instead of a gun-slinging Secret Service agent, Daddy was a ranch hand and field worker who could do everything from shearing sheep and branding and herding cattle to picking cotton and other agricultural products. Because he loved cars, he became a self-taught auto mechanic and he worked on all of our cars--especially near inspection time.

He and Mama loved to dance and she tells us that together they once won a jitterbug dance contest. If only I could have seen that. She and Daddy would sometimes travel to the Mexican town of Acuna to see the bullfights, and to go dancing. The photos we've saved from those trips show a quite stylish couple, looking glamorous and happy. My parents truly loved and cared for one another. I would say that Mama is still in love with him--even after two decades of him being gone. That's enduring love.

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