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Always A Good Time


        Dancing with my grandpa many years ago

My grandfather died recently. He was 92.

I’m fortunate to have spent much of my youth knowing him. Even after I moved away I saw him every time I came home, most recently in July 2018. While the visits became shorter over the past few years, not much had changed.

Seeing him was always a good time.

You could expect to be greeted with a wide toothless grin and a wet smokey kiss to the forehead. He’d always make direct eye contact as you spoke, which probably helped him hear better, but also was out of interest in what you had to say. For someone who loved to ‘shoot the shit’, the bull didn’t fly until you were settled. He had fantastic timing. My grandfather was genuine through and through and if you didn’t see that, you weren’t paying close enough attention.

Eleven a.m. often seemed the perfect time to crack open a beer, Grain Belt or Pabst, and there’d be a lot of catching up to do if you arrived after dinner. Sweet smelling cigar smoke would fill the garage; a welcome change from the earlier years of harsh cigarette smoke that seeped into your pores upon entering the house.

Talk radio was a constant background noise, left on throughout the day in the bathroom and in the garage, only balanced out by the wind chimes on the porch and the birds fluttering in the bath on the front lawn.

Often, rollicking laughter would echo out from various places across the acres of land he owned. Children and adults would run quickly to follow the sound, as if it were a call not to miss out on the good time.

Because seeing him was always a good time.

Disagreements on many social and political issues never mattered. My grandmother was often there to remind my grandfather who he was talking to should the conversation go over my pre-teen head.

He took good care of us through the years and was well taken care of throughout his life by many. His children lived all over the states but were always, always there for him.

My grandfather’s love for his family was never questioned.  Nor was our love for him. 

I’ll miss him. I’ll miss his child-like energy that passed on to the next generation. I’ll miss his hugs, his laughter, his smiles, his charm, his wit, and the way he lived every day having a good time.

Because seeing him was always a good time.

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