A LETTER TO GRANDFATHER

Do you Know? 

Dear Grandfather,

Do you know that today it’s been two years since your passing. That two years and one day ago we sang sea shanties by your bed side, plaited your soft white hair and whispered in your ear how much we love you.

Do you know that on Fridays we still go to Ying Wah. That we still eat together as a family, tell stories and take turns reading our fortune cookies to each other. That many of the same old faces are there and that they still bring out an ice cream cake for your birthday.

Do you know that I wake up in your room. That I look in the same mirror you faced for 50 years, wash in the same tub, eat breakfast from the bowls that you and Grandma saved for, that I sit at your place at the table.

Do you know that in that in the mornings the cockatoos still come by. That they tap on the window, squawk, chip the paint from the rails and that the lorikeets still rule the roost.

Do you know that on the fridge we have a piece of paper. That on that piece of paper we write down all the things that you and Grandma said. That we treasure these pearls of wisdom, mispronounced words, echoes across the bay and memories from times gone by.

Do you know how much we miss the small things. The stale biscuits, the mouldy salads, the Hawaiian shirts, the ‘all year round’ knee high socks and shorts, the mothball eaten jumpers, the holey shoes, soft white hair, nose whiskers, big hands, the bear hugs, the booming voice, your farewells from the front porch, and the way you would blow us kisses over the back of your hand.

Most of all we miss the way you made us feel when we were in your presence.

Yet the love and encouragement and warmth will stay with us always.

Love you Grandfather.

Alfred Leslie Innis Vaughan 1915 – 2012

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  • AnyaAugust 22, 2014 - 2:01 pm

    Just beautiful Alex.ReplyCancel

    • Alex VaughanAugust 22, 2014 - 2:04 pm

      Thank you Anya.ReplyCancel

  • AdrienneAugust 22, 2014 - 2:39 pm

    Gaah shouldn’t have opened this post whole sitting in a cafe. Very lovely, beautiful and sadReplyCancel

    • Alex VaughanAugust 22, 2014 - 11:41 pm

      Sorry about that Adrienne. I probably should have warned you.ReplyCancel

  • TimAugust 22, 2014 - 4:41 pm

    You make me wish I’d known him. What a loving legacy, beautifully expressed.ReplyCancel

    • Alex VaughanAugust 22, 2014 - 11:41 pm

      Did you get to meet him at Projections TAnger? He was a special man indeed.ReplyCancel

  • ShakthiAugust 22, 2014 - 7:34 pm

    So beautiful.

    And I relate: I live amongst 4 generations of my family’s furniture, crockery, everything… there is a story in every corner and I remember my grandparents fondly everyday.ReplyCancel

    • Alex VaughanAugust 22, 2014 - 11:40 pm

      Shakthi, it’s incredible how your family lives on through the things in your home. It’s other worldly. Such a vast space filled with so many beautiful memories.ReplyCancel

  • OliAugust 22, 2014 - 11:30 pm

    Lost one nearly a year ago too. Extra loved this post.ReplyCancel

    • Alex VaughanAugust 22, 2014 - 11:38 pm

      Thanks Oli. My heart goes out to you too. They’re special beings our old folk.ReplyCancel

  • AimeeAugust 23, 2014 - 12:59 am

    So beautiful Vaughny! Thankyou for sharing this 🙂
    How blessed we are to have had such good grand folk amongst us 🙂
    xReplyCancel

    • Alex VaughanAugust 23, 2014 - 1:07 am

      Oh May May, we are, we are. And to have such great friends too.ReplyCancel

  • Clare DavisDecember 11, 2014 - 8:54 am

    Alex, I could feel every sentiment that I’m sure you were feeling at the time as I looked through your Les and Eileen photos with tears in my eyes. Just beautiful. Thankyou for sharing.ReplyCancel

    • Alex VaughanDecember 12, 2014 - 4:15 pm

      Clare, thank you very much for your kind words.ReplyCancel

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