"As kingfishers catch fire, dragonflies draw flame; / [ . . . ] Each mortal thing does one thing and the same: / Deals out that being indoors each one dwells; / Selves -- goes itself; 'myself' it speaks and spells, / Crying 'What I do is me; for that I came'." --Gerard Manley Hopkins

16 December 2010


We are considering a new house and have been driving around seeing what's available. The other day we saw a lovely one which happens to have a swimming pool. I had noticed in the ads that the pool has been maintained by a professional company, and as I was thinking about the house as a possible new home, I thought, "Well, that's good, but we can just call Daddy . . ."

When they lived in South Texas, my parents had a lovely swimming pool in back of the house, above the bay. We all loved it, but the kids almost lived in it. Our oldest took apart the pool vacuum once, and when his granddad caught him at it explained, "I was going to put it back together." The second son got his one spanking from his granddad when he refused to leave the pool one afternoon, though his lips were turning blue and his teeth were chattering. Being sufficiently mechanically minded, Daddy did the pool maintenance himself, at least for the most part as I recall, learning what chemicals were needed in what proportion and when, how to clean it, and so on. The kids helped whenever they could and loved to glean leaves and trash from the water with the vacuum (when not taking it apart to see how it worked).

So Daddy knew pool maintenance, and when I thought about possibly having a swimming pool, I automatically thought that we could just call him to learn how to take care of it. But he hadn't remembered the swimming pool for a long time, and now I can never call him for anything again.

I didn't know how sharp and physical grief can be.


GrumpyTeacher1 said...

I'm so sorry, Beth.

Beth Impson said...

Thanks, Scott. Just part of life as we must live it in this broken world -- but knowing that doesn't make it any easier.