Love for Grandpa Through SoCal Waters

It was an end. To the wondering, the bickering, and the sadness; it was the end. My aunt and mother look on as my father tenderly holds my other aunt while standing on a porous rock amidst the beautiful southern California waters. 1 do not remember taking this photograph, but what I do remember is this: I loved my grandfather. When I was seven my mother, father, and I made the mere three-hour trip to Monterey to visit my grandparents We had visited so often I could close my eyes and drive the roads in my head, The never-ending lines of trees; almost there.

The trip was tedious. Valley after valley; what crops are those? Artichoke; and those? Cabbage. No wonder it smelt so bad. Yet Monterey is the most beautiful city of California that I know. The smells, the weather, the people are incredible. It was my place of meditation.

Walking up to the traditional Mexican orange adobe style building I could feel all the stress (as much as a seven-year—old could have) drift away as though it were a piece of drift wood being carried out to sea by the outgoing tides.

Inside the house was just as comforting, the fireplace always burning, The fire was my grandfather’s personal shredder. I remember partaking in the activity of burning junk mail and on occasion, electrical bills. I adored my grandpa. My grandfather was a nomad. He was a musician, a painter, and a writer. He had no bounds and would often leave and not come back for several months, if we were lucky only a day.

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I knew that the connection between us had grown to its pinnacle when he gave me his most precious of painting markers. Take good care of these, he told me. I was not the artist. To this day I have problems drawing stick figures. Yet I took extreme care and still have the markers in my closet.

After giving me the gift of art, grandpa took me for a walk. It was a very somber walk for reasons that were not explainable at that moment. We took the dog, Skippy. At some moments Skippy was our conversation starter. Actually the only conversation between us was about Skippy. We both were not known for our fabulous conversational skills. Silence was often. Yet it was not the awkward silence, It was as though we understood each other solely upon expression. Without speaking a syllable, a whole thought could be expressed. Presently I can still remember the paths we took around the neighborhood and what color the cat was that Skippy barked at on the way back (calico). At the Lime I was not aware of the effect that that twenty-minute walk would have on my life or how much I would miss it. It was the finale. The years of torment, not knowing what to do with the ashes.

Three sets of them. My grandfather, my grandmother, Skippy. Should we mix all three of them? Would grandpa really like being buried with the dog? The container was empty, Emptied into a sea that has its ups and downs, highs and lows much like my family. I will forever look upon the photo of my family and feel the pang of loss of a great man, my grandfather. Of whom no one really understood, except for myself. That fateful day was the day when my family finally let go of the weight that death brings. That day brought a purification of the soul, much like the tides cleanse the waters. With the tides came and went my grandfather. He will forever be part of the Californian ocean. I will never look upon the waters the same. I cherished my grandfather.

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Love for Grandpa Through SoCal Waters. (2022, Oct 23). Retrieved from

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