Thursday, February 17, 2011

A Fun Visitor

We are so thankful that Carlos Robledo could take time out of his busy work schedule to come visit Dad last Sunday! While Dad didn't go to school with Carlos, he definitely went to school with about 10 other Robledos... all the cousins and brothers. It wasn't until the 80s that Dad and Carlos became friends. One day at UPS there was a new guy (Carlos) and while he was being introduced to everyone, Dad knew instantly that Carlos must be related to all those Robledos from Pasadena Jr. High and High School. He was right, and a friendship blossomed.

Carlos shared with us the many fishing trips that they took together and the time they spent gardening and doing yard-work over the years... it sounds like a lot of the time Dad was showing Carlos how to fish and sharing his tricks of the trade in the garden. I had Carlos bring Bonsai clippers so we could doctor up Dad's 30 year old bonsai plant that we brought to Whittier. That plant is still going strong.

We also looked at fishing trip pictures that Carlos brought along. Dad really enjoyed looking through those and slowly remembered some of the memories. At first Dad got Carlos confused for their other friend, Mike, but after reminding him who he was, Dad remembered the Robledos. It really helped that Carlos started naming off all the people that Dad went to school with and since that's really the time Dad lives in, he loved hearing those names.

Carlos also told a story of how my Dad would bend over and fart in my face when I was about 3 years old. I would crinkle my nose and Dad would say, "Who did that?" And I would apparently say, "Daddy do that." Okay, very cute story, but also VERY gross. Megan said she felt bad for me. Haha. But it does explain why Dad would always say in a child-like voice, "Daddy do that". I never knew what that meant until now.

Anyway, thank you Carlos for sharing your stories and for visiting Dad. We always love hearing stories about my Dad. Obviously we have a much different memory of what my Dad was like as a person, but I'm starting to feel like we never knew the 'real' Dave.

A couple of nights ago, I was talking about my Dad to some family friends on my Mom's side. They told me a few more stories... about how my Dad was always the 'funny guy', very social, party-guy, generous and friendly, and liked to tease. While some of these characteristics describe Dad perfectly, others don't sound like the Dad I knew. But now that his memory is gone, I really find that his true personal traits are coming out. He is so sweet and friendly to everyone at Whittier Place, he talks to everyone, and is always generous (asking if we're hungry or offering us things). These qualities are missing from my childhood memories, but it's nice to know they were always there even if they were buried under anger and alcohol.

The last story I am going to share is about Megan and Dad. Apparently Megan would get really whiny and upset at the beach because she hated being cold and having the sand all over her when she was little. This would happen repeatedly during a day at the beach, but Dad wouldn't hesitate to run her over to the hotel jacuzzi and bounce her around in there until she was happy. Over and over again.

We cling to these happy stories from the past and of who my Dad really was. So if you have any, we'd love to hear more of them.

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