In recognition of the wildly popular National Blog Something From Draft Week 2009, which you probably know as NaBloSoFroDraWe, I decided to finally write this post. It's one of several in my drafts folder about my Dad, and I need to find the time to finish more of them. He has been on my mind a lot lately. First it was because of the one year anniversary of his death, but then it was the trips I took these last couple of weeks. So many of the summer vacations my 10-year old has had included my Dad, which I'm sure is why she brought him up to me multiple times a day while on vacation. (The fact that we saw a ridiculous amount of Coopers on the island was a factor as well. Seriously, they were everywhere. Every color and style.)
You know how some memories are impossible to date? This is one of those. Whenever my Dad came home from work, most days he would ask my Mom "Did my package come?" and she'd always casually say "No." When I was old enough to care, I asked what package he was talking about. Turns out there was no package. Ever.
When my Mom and Dad were first married, money was tight. I guess it was always kind of tight, but that's probably more because of my Mom's thrifty, saving nature. Those qualities were actual very critical, as they were needed to balance out my Dad's nature--to spend it as soon as he had it. So apparently, early in their marriage my Dad's way of dealing with this conflict was to create something that was designed solely to drive my Mom crazy. They were married in January and I was born in December (makes you think for a second, right? Dad loved that too, but that's another post...) so I imagine my Mom was really freaking out about money.
One day my he came home from work and asked her simply "Did my package come?" and she instantly panicked: "Package? What package? What did you order? We can't afford anything! What package is coming?" He just chuckled and said it was nothing to worry about and just let it go. She got really upset, but he remained calm. After doing this every day for a week, I'm sure my Mom was probably about to explode, thinking all week that he spent all this money that she knew nothing about and was sure they couldn't afford.
He finally confessed to her that there was no package; he had just been teasing her. I picture my Mom being absolutely furious at him for a solid 5 minutes, and then not being able to help smiling and just shaking her head. That was a reaction my Dad always got easily--he could always elicit a smile from you shortly after whatever frustration he first caused you. There were always lots of both around him.
Even though the joke was up after a week, the routine of him asking her when he got home from work "Did my package come?"continued for almost as long as I can remember, probably as long as he went to work every day. And after she answered "no" my Mom always just smiled and shook her head.