Not sure how to begin a blog, so I shall begin with an ending: my dad’s ending. My dad died a year ago. It was a year ago this past Monday. Yet the mourning of it still has a presence that can come up and tap me on my shoulder at any minute. Sometimes I can hear it sneaking up, like a floorboard squeaking. Someone talks about losing his parent or your watching a sad movie. Sometimes the mourning moment is a surprise and the tapping on the shoulder makes me jump and I cry for no apparent reason. During the crying I realize it’s a “dad moment,” as I’ve labeled them.
I have the day off Monday and think about what I want to do differently. I need the day not to resemble my normal. I desire to mark it. I live close to Virginia Beach, so I decide that’s where I will go for the rest of my dad’s day.
Walking the beach I notice what was unremarkable. I look for what is simple. In my memory, my dad is a simple man. Simple in the fact that what you see is what you get. He is a man of few words, succinct and direct. He is a bowl of Shredded Wheat back when the cereal looked like hay bales. Though my dad never came to the beach with me, he walks next to me. I see him in my camera lens. My memory plays the good. I want peace today. I want the smoothness of low tide.