I am not sure what brought this post on...but I am going to run with it.
My grandpa was narcoleptic.
Every swimming (or any other sport attempted) race that either me or Hemmy swam in, my grandpa missed because he fell asleep.
Especially if it was down to the wire.
He just couldn't handle the excitement of seeing his favorite people race their hearts out.
But we NEVER...ever...swam a race with him in the building, without hearing my grandpa bellow out "GO...RIKKI...GO! "(or Hemmy if he was the one swimming) at the top of his lungs.
I am sure that there were swim meets (even in our competitive college years) that Hemmy and I can both attest to, where we were in the crouched starting position with a smile on our faces because we had just heard our grandpa's cheer.
It was heartwarming.
My grandpa was a penny pincher. But in a good way. He was no Scrooge, rather the opposite.
He was one of the most giving people I have ever met.
But he had a knack for finding a bargain.
Although I didn't realize it growing up, my grandpa instilled in me, the thrill of a sale. I LOVE checking out at Target or J C Penney and seeing the "full price" versus what I really paid. There is some sort of weird buzz in seeing how much money I DIDN'T pay.
Along those same lines, I am a garage sale snob.
I will never forget, being pregnant with HP, The Dude was 15 months old, and going to visit my grandparents in Arizona.
It was awesome because Grandma was more than happy to get up with The Dude at 6:00 AM while I slept in. And Grandpa and I were able to go to garage sales (while my grandma showed her great-grandson off to all the other retirement village residents).
My grandpa had very strict rules that governed over garage sale worthiness. For instance, if a sale was sloppy, or had poor signage...forget it. My grandpa wouldn't even grace you with his presence. He was old school. You had to take time and effort to set up your sale! And if your prices were not competitive...look out. My grandpa could dicker with the best of them. You wanted $.25 for your old nappy picture frame? My grandpa would offer $.10.
He taught me that I should always seek out people/businesses that are willing to make their customers happy.
My grandpa was a maverick (and not in the lame John McCain sort of way). He was the real deal.
He taught me life lessons that only now, as a parent, I am starting to be able to appreciate.
I hope that his life lessons can pay a testament to the time I was blessed to spend with him, while serving as a cyber-diary for my kids when they are grown and are curious about their family.
To be continued...