broken pieces of me…

My father, the storyteller

At the gentle urging of my cousin (a comment he wrote to my post “One more step…”) as well as my own creative conscience smacking me in the back of the head, I am writing a post right now! Right this minute! Uhm… a little obvious, right? Since you’re reading what I typed. (-_^) Photos however will have to wait until tomorrow or Wednesday night. My apologies, kind visitors.

I noticed something this morning as I was walking to work from my weekend retreat at my fella’s place; peonies seem to give off more of a perfume as they’re expiring. Although, the rain helped too because everything smells so much more fragrant when it’s damp out (even not-so-yummy smelling things), but the scent of the peonies this morning as they were dropping their petals like tears for Spring soaked the air as if it were warring with the oxygen for popularity. It was really quite beautiful and I thought I’d share that.

But the title of my post… that was something I thought of recently. Just after my grandmother’s 75 birthday party up-country on July 5th actually. I know… long time to ponder something before posting… but I really wanted to get it out properly, even now I don’t think I’ll do my pondering justice. My thoughts were prompted by my father himself. He was talking with a fellow military guy, though a bit younger than me in age, and just a bunch of us really. We were sitting outside under the camo-net, that had been set up for Nan’s birthday, on the lawn chairs and he was talking about something him and some of his military friends did for one of their commanding officers who died rather suddenly (medical issues). What they did, they could get in a LOT of trouble for so I won’t repeat it here, even though the story was very moving (my father had to fight tears because this was a man that he really respected) and I hope to hear it again sometime.

That evening before sunset we, my fella, Jess, and I, went for a walk along the road. We stopped to let my Dad’s cousins know that one of their chickens had gotten out and was in their garden, took some pictures of the little old church, flowers, dirt roads, and then decided we would go out back in the field to the fish pond to see what was going on there. My beau got some good pictures of a frog that was yelling across the pond at a friend. I got a picture of one in the middle of the pond (could just see the eye above water… kind of creepy honestly), and then we noticed deer coming up over the edge of the decline. I took some pictures for Dad.

Anyway, as we were walking my beau mentioned how much he enjoyed listening to my Dad’s stories, and I had to say that I felt the same way. I even told Dad so when we were back in SJ and were watching a newer Western on the television. A commercial came up and he was telling me the stories he knew of Geronimo, so I told him about my beau mentioning his enjoyment of Dad’s stories and that I enjoyed them too. He seemed pleased, but he takes compliments about as well as I usually do… never thinking we deserve them.

That same weekend my Uncle Jim, one of my Mom’s brothers, came to visit. I only got to see him briefly up-country because we were on our way back to SJ the same day he arrived. However, he came to SJ to visit that Thursday evening until the weekend, so Thursday night during supper him and Dad talked about the military. Uncle Jim was a medic, at least at some point, so he talked about his experiences, and Dad told him about the trip he got to take to Normandy and Dieppe in France and the older men that he got to talk to. That’s when he brought up the point; once these older men who lived during the wars, fought and survived the wars, die… we will lose their stories. Losing tales, no matter how gruesome, upsetting, depressing they can be, in regards to the wars at least, saddens me.

As much as I don’t appreciate the school system’s versions of History (all dates and names with no real story involved), I love hearing it from the source, or hearing it from someone like my father. His enjoyment of history permeates every word he speaks on it and makes it truly enjoyable to hear.

So, in order not to lose his stories or those of my uncles, I bought a voice recorder. I just need to get an external mic now, because the internal is a little hard to point in order to get a clear voice.

I want to be able to keep the voices of those I love, even when they aren’t around to speak to me directly.

My little tidbit of wisdom today; never take anything for granted. You could turn around, or blink, and it could be gone forever. Listen to the stories of those around you because a lot of them have experienced this first hand.

And because I promised: I have a friend, Bojan, who is a brilliant photo-journalist and a loving father to two little girls. He is trying to raise the funds needed to complete a project. Here is a brief blurb and it also links to the site where he’s selling pixels of the image (that’s why the top part of the site is a little bare at the moment):

“I have a photography and multimedia project I would like to execute. The project will focus on smaller islands in Eastern Canada and Croatia and the ways that their cultural, social and economic environments are shaped by islands’ relative geographical isolation – their islandness, if you will. I believe that with appropriate funding I can complete this project in 2 years.”

And I must add that he posted a nice spot about books that he enjoys reading to his little girls because they portray strong female characters. If you don’t click here to read it, at least look at the books he suggested:

  • The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall
  • Igraine the Brave by Cornelia Funke
  • Matilda by Roald Dahl
  • BFG by Roald Dahl
  • Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery
  • The Five Lost Aunts of Harriet Bean by Alexander McCall Smith and Laura Rankin
  • Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
  • After Hamelin by Bill Richardson

But that is it for me… I must get back to editing the photos so that I can post some of them tomorrow night or Wednesday.

Be well Everyone, and thank you for visiting!

3 Responses to “My father, the storyteller”
Bojan Says:

July 22nd, 2008 at 3:03 pm edit

Thanks for the plug

You should write down some of your dad’s stories. In fact, record them. those are treasures all too easy to lose. And It looks like he passed some of those story telling genes on

Love your blog, by the way…

admin Says:

July 22nd, 2008 at 6:11 pm edit

Not a problem! I really enjoy reading your blog (when I get a spare chance), and I thought your idea for raising money for the project is rather ingenious. Your comments about strong female characters in the books you try to read to your daughters really stuck in my head too.

That’s the idea behind the voice recorder really. I’ll record him telling his stories, then type them out. That way I can save them in print, as well as audio.

I love to write, actually, and thought that I would become one of the youngest published authors… but that was years ago and I never seem to be able to finish a book that I start. I got as many as 51 single-spaced typed pages at the beginning of High School… then the file became corrupt and I lost it. Lesson to be learned… SAVE OFTEN, and multiple copies! I do that now with photos and illustrations that I manipulate, just to be sure I don’t lose anything again!

And thank you very much! The feeling is definitely mutual

Adam Wilson Says:

August 4th, 2008 at 5:10 pm edit

Another good book to read to children (which I grew up reading when I was a child) is The Arabian Nights (or 1001 nights). There are quite a few strong female characters in that book of mythology. Some may find it too violent for little children, but maybe it might be a book to look into later on in their life.

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