For the last 49 years, my entire life, my parents have always been there for me as a manifestation of stability. They may not have been perfect people but they were perfect for me. They have always been my biggest support in no matter what I was trying to do. Be it, writing, working as an aviation maintenance technician, or going to school, they were always there to encourage me and let me know I was loved.
On March 30th, my father passed away at the age of 90. Five months later, on September 1st, my mother joined him for eternity and now all I have left in my mortal existence is memories.
The other day I was passing a candy vending machine and saw the yellow wrappered Milky Way bar with caramel. A pang of sadness impaled my heart as I remembered buying bags of these very candy bars for my parents just within the last year. In fact, I gave my mom 3 bags after my dad's funeral so she could take them back to Logan where she lived. These were their favorites snacks and they had one every day.
This picture is my mom and dad in 1987 on the beach in Barbados. Because of my job at the time, with Eastern Airlines, I was able to take them to visit the beautiful island. I'll never forget the trip for several reasons. First, I was able to do something for them after years and years of sacrifices they made for me. Second, my dad loaded the same roll of 35mm film in his camera twice so all his pictures ended up being double exposed and of great entertainment to us. Third, while walking around Bridgetown, my mom passed out and I remember thinking that perhaps that was it for her. The residents came running from everywhere. One person brought smelling salts. Another brought a box for her to sit on once she came to. The people were so friendly and helpful and I think it was because of this trip that I started having the desire to see the world.
Over the course of the last thirteen years. I've done a lot of traveling internationally. After visiting Denmark and Sweden next week, I'll have visited 30 different countries during this time. I think its a wonderful way to better understand and appreciate the world and also the United States. I've had the opportunity to take my kids on trips and show them so many beneficial things. I love to travel still and will take advantage of it as long as I'm capable.
In two days, we head to Denmark. This is a last minute change from the original destination we had planned for to Romania. Why the change? Well, my daughter Heather was suppose to go with us but she is unable to go this week and we didn't want to go without her so we altered the plan until she can go. Denmark is the birthplace of my great great grandmother on my mom's side. I think that after seeing it, and walking through the streets, I'll feel a little closer to her and my grandmother who I never met.
My parents were really remarkable people. I love and miss them so much.