December 20th was both my father and my grandson’s birthday. My grandson was eight and my father would have been 86. We lost him almost four years ago in February.
Today though I felt his presence wondering through the Barrel Antique Mall. I had not been there in many years. It is a cool antique mall in Springfield, Illinois off Toronto Road.
When dad retired from the State of Illinois he opened a frame shop, Village Frame shop, and this was the 2nd location where he had his shop. I worked just down the road and often stopped by on my way home.
He wasn’t open all that often. He had banker hours. He was retired after all. Like everything he did, he was a perfectionist. His framing was the same. Anyway, when the mall first opened, dad had his shop there and antiques.
He hasn’t had his shop at this location for probably 18 years or so. But today I swear I could feel him there. I could see him behind the counter. I could hear his voice. I could see his Rose Medallion plates he loved and the mud men he loved. I could, well, I could see him.
When I asked the people working if they had been there for a while, eight years was the maximum. When I mentioned dad’s shop, I just got a blank stare. It was too many years ago, light years from their present.
My past was not part of their history. However, they may not know it, but he is still there in sprit, part of his memory remains.
I enjoyed thinking of my father, a man I loved dearly. I loved remembering fond times. It was fun walking back through some shared history the day before Christmas, a time for family, a time for love, a time to reflect.
Merry Christmas from Traveling Adventures of a Farm Girl. May you cherish those you love. Hang on tight to those while you have them and appreciate the memories of those that have moved on.