“At 10 o’clock tonight, look up at the moon. I’ll be looking at it, too, from our porch, and I’ll be thinking of you. Know that I love you and always will.”
That was a note that my mother left in my father’s jacket pocket before he went off on a fishing trip. My mother was a big fan of romance novels and so there were always notes in lunch boxes, pockets,and tool boxes. Fe DaPonte told the story of this note to my sister, Terri, one day when he saw her at Gil’s where she worked. Fe, apparently, was cold on that fishing trip and had borrowed my father’s jacket. When he put his hand in the jacket pocket, he found the note. Needless to say, my father probably got a good ribbing from his fishing buddies on that trip.
My father died when Terri was just 2 and so she never knew her father. That story is a glimpse into someone that helped to bring her into this world, who adored her, and who loved our mother very much.
There are other stories of my parents and my father’s fishing buddies. My sister is at the center of some of them, even though she was very young. She was born during an annual tuna tournament. Naturally, my father couldn’t miss the fishing, so he dropped my mother off at the hospital when she went into labor with a promise that he would get back later to check on her and to see the new baby.
Well, a storm arose and there was no getting my father back to shore, and so my sister was born without her father there. My mother was furious! But the story of my father’s efforts to get to shore, make it a story worth going into the family history books.
My siblings and I know very little our parents’ lives as adults. They are both gone now and so we cling to the stories told by their friends. Thank you, Fe and Manny, for sharing them with us. Happy Father’s Day to you both!