I’m freshly back from a bittersweet long-weekend up in the childhood homestead. Dad had a doctor’s appointment in Tulsa on Friday morning so I chauffeured him and mom up.
Did a few little home maintenance and gardening tasks for the folks. Things are the same there, but different. Tomatoes are ripening, but on vines that are being swallowed by grass and weeds. Huge yellow squash plants are wilting for want of water. Still, the old peach tree behind the house is so laden with fruit that the lower branches are touching the ground.
Accompanied dad to a men’s breakfast at their church. The men at the church know about dad’s battle with Alzheimer’s and are supportive, patient and empathetic.
At one point, a man roughly my own age came up to me and said, “Your father is a hero to me.”
“Thanks,” I said. “He’s one to me, too,”
“He’s sneaky,” the man continued. “For years he’s been quietly slipping around helping people all over this town. He never calls attention to himself. He just serves and serves.”
“Yeah,” I agreed. “He likes to fly under the radar.”
Sunday lunch was good. The news from dad’s doctor was not. And I’ll be checking on those peaches in a couple of weeks.