Celebration

… There’s a party goin’ on right hereA celebration to last throughout the yearsSo bring your good times and your laughter tooWe gonna celebrate your party with youCome on now Yesterday would have been Mom and Dad’s 64th wedding anniversary; given Dad would have been 89 and Mom 93, the chances of celebrating the occasion wereContinue reading “Celebration”

Let it snow

“You don’t have to shovel rain.” I was reminded again this past weekend of my father’s saying after three hours of clearing the accumulated snow fall at the cottage. Some work was self-imposed, shoveling my way to the ice beneath in an annual effort to make a skating rink on the lake. Fortunately, the 200Continue reading “Let it snow”

Just don’t call me late for dinner

My name is Henricus Gerardus Decock, at least according to my birth certificate. Those who know me are raising an eyebrow; those reading the “About” page are confused, understandably. I seldom refer to myself in that manner. According to the website, behindthename.com , “Henricus is the Latinized form of Heinrich. As a Dutch name, itContinue reading “Just don’t call me late for dinner”

Pics or it didn’t happen

The ubiquity of digital and cell phone photography has translated into the accumulation of thousands of photographs by individual people, many shared through some form of social media, the bulk stored on the devices themselves or on terabyte size hard drives. There is no risk in continually pressing the button. Mistakes, blurriness and bad anglesContinue reading “Pics or it didn’t happen”

You’ve Got Mail

Another Christmas card arrived in the mail today, a welcome alternative to the flyers and bills and requests for money which clutter the box in December. The number of cards sent and received is shrinking but it is a tradition which marks the holiday season in the same manner as purchasing a real tree. ChristmasContinue reading “You’ve Got Mail”

Return to Sender

Today would have been Dad’s 89th birthday. Petrus Gerardus Cornelius Aloysius de Cock was born on this day, November 27, 1932 in Tilburg, the Netherlands. Return to Sender is a story about my writing to him up until his death at a long term care home in Wallaceburg, April 2, 2019. The notes began whenContinue reading “Return to Sender”

Training 101

On October 8, Olga and I purchased a Samoyed from a breeder near Peterborough, Ont. He came with the name, Smirnoff, which we were quick to replace with Odin. This 9 month old puppy was certainly bigger than we anticipated (61 pounds according to our vet) and younger; we had our name on a listContinue reading “Training 101”

Take a chance on me

“Are you the couple getting married here later this afternoon.” The woman had wandered over to us sitting in the fifth row, left side, hand in hand, quietly watching the preparations. A number of people were scurrying about St. Peter’s Cathedral Basilica in London, ensuring the flowers were arranged just right, the candles were displayingContinue reading “Take a chance on me”

The Last Breath

I remember Mom’s last breath. It was more of a heave, a bursting of air, a quick exhalation preceded by days of shallow, open mouthed panting. We had sent Dad to our house, imploring him to get some decent rest. He had held vigil for the last five days, never leaving the hospital since heContinue reading “The Last Breath”

They look like big, good, strong hands

A focused memoir in 200 words. I wipe the dribble of gravy running down his chin through the three-day stubble, his head leaning to the left. Dad’s eyes pop a little wider to acknowledge the attention, probably feeling embarrassed. He does not want to blemish the new orange soccer sweatshirt emblazoned with the Dutch flag.Continue reading “They look like big, good, strong hands”