Sunday is Father's day. In the spirit of the times, I decided to write about a few of my favorite memories of my dad.
My dad was the sole bread winner in our family, which meant he worked a lot. So the times we shared with him were special. My mom dealt with us (my little sister and I) all day long, so pawning us off on Dad on his day off was a welcome change for her I'm sure. I remember Dad taking us (me and Cootie) to Wet Willy's, the coolest water slides of all time. The slides still exist (though are horribly run down) in Fenton, right at the intersection of 141 and 44, on that huge hill above the Steak 'n Shake. There were three slides (or two? I can't remember), and you went down them on a raft of some sort, and it was most fun to see how much weight you could pack on the raft to go as fast as possible. We'd go down, get out, run up the countless stairs, and repeat over and over until our little bodies couldn't take it anymore. We loved it.
Dad took us first to Naugles, the old taco joint (which I think has subsequently morphed into Del Taco, but I could be wrong), which seems now like a bad idea (tacos then waterslides?), but we loved it. Mom doesn't eat mexican, so for Cootie and I this was a special treat. Then we'd head down to the park, pay our money, and slide like banshees. We'd take turns going alone, or going with Dad, or just us girls. Cootie and I would go first, then wait excitedly at the bottom for Dad to fly out of the slide like a bullet into the pool below, always with a huge smile on his face. I remember Cootie and I being so excited about the prospect of spending the day with Dad. We always had fun.
Another favorite memory is waiting for Dad to come home from work. Cootie and I would hear the garage door open, and we'd take our usual places just behind the utility room (or junk room, as we called it) door and wait. Dad would close the garage door, come in through the heavy outside door, and we'd wait for him to emerge from the junk room then shout 'Surprise!' He acted surprised every time. Of course he knew we'd be there, but that didn't matter. His reaction kept us doing it time and time again. I remember so well the feel and smell of his trademark suits against my cheek whenever we hugged him afterwards.
My dad is a special guy, and I hope he has a great day on Sunday.