Father’s Day Reflections
Father’s Day and all the Hallmark holidays stir up so many thoughts.
I grew up with Robert Young and Danny Thomas as my television dad templates for what a dad should be.
My father was neither one of these men. He did not come home at night and say, “Hi honey, I”m home!” to my mom.
My parents were divorced.
So my memories as a young child are of visiting with my dad either on Saturday or Sunday and spending time with his parents, sisters and a cousin, all of whom spoke Italian, a language I neither spoke nor understood.
On regular occasions he would take me on a Fifth Avenue shopping spree or ice skating under the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Center. He never skated with me but sat at a window table at the English Grill restaurant rink side.
As a tween and teen in New York, my dad introduced me to a life of privilege, private school and weekend adventures in NYC which included eating at some of the most well-known and fancy restaurants, where he knew the owner or maitre’d. Manners and proper dress attire was required, it is reminiscent of a era that for the most part has all but vanished .
My father gave me a delight for wonderful food and superb restaurants. He gave me an appreciation for the romance of the Italian language, he gave me a love of beautiful surroundings, especially a gorgeous warm day at the ocean on Long Island. He also gave me a love of beautifully made clothes from exclusive stores, and beautiful black cars. He owned the very first Buick Riviera with his name engraved on a plate that said expressly made for Charles ……..
I loved my dad in my own way although we became estranged after I married the love of my life and became a mother.
My dad died over twenty years ago but was gone long before that.
I miss the dad and grandpa he could have been but remember the dad and grandpa he was.
It was all he could be.