My father had seven grandchildren. But, he had only one grandson. Dad always wished my brother would do the boy and his father things with him. Dad liked to fish, bowl, watch baseball games, and go hunting. My brother didn’t like any of those things. And to be fair, dad was busy with his job when we were young and didn’t have much daytime to spend with us. Sometimes he worked nights and had to sleep in the daytime.
So, when dad retired and had time and a grandson to spend his time with, he spent a lot of time with my son. Dad took his grandson fishing. He took him along to ride in the car when he went to the store. For a few years mom and dad had a second home near ours. After school and weekends my son would hang out with his grandpa while grandpa was fixing up his new home. Grandson would hold up the plasterboard while grandpa nailed it. He would just talk and hang around when there was nothing else to do.
Although grandpa wasn’t in that home year round, his grandson was good company when he was there. Other times my son would be outside playing with his sisters or with neighborhood friends. In those days the children were outdoors a lot and came in mostly for meals.
While dad was still building his house, he was often in town without mom. She was at their permanent home and sometimes she was working as he retired earlier than she did. When dad was in town, after the children got off the school bus, sometimes they would run in to see dad (and mom if she was in town) for a short visit first before coming into their own house.
One day even before he came home from school, my son realized he was in trouble. It turned out they received their school pictures on that day. And when my son saw his school picture, he realized he had a problem. He stopped to see grandpa first and insisted grandpa call me to make sure it was safe for him to come home!
What was the problem? On school picture day I insisted that all the children wear their best clothes for their pictures. My son wanted to wear a t-shirt like he usually did – a striped t-shirt. I wanted him to wear a nice shirt with collar and buttons. We compromised. He would wear his t-shirt to school and bring his good shirt in a bag. When it was time for pictures, he would go to the boys’ room and take off his t-shirt and put on his good shirt.
However, when the time came and the photographer was there, my son took a short cut. Instead of removing his t-shirt, he simply put his good shirt right over it. He didn’t figure I would know the difference since he would have his good shirt on in the picture. He also didn’t look in a mirror or he would have seen what he finally saw when he got his pictures back! The picture above is exhibit A.
So, he ran in first to see grandpa. Grandpa had to convince mom not to kill her only son because he ruined his school picture. Phone call was made. Mom promised not to kill her son, and son came home with his school pictures. Problem solved. And we have a story for a lifetime!