Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Grandpa and Picking Up Chicks

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Today’s Blog Post

Grandpa and Picking Up Chicks
I sputtered when I heard the small voice in the back seat ask his question.

“Grandma, where did you find Grandpa?”

Needless to say, Grandma asked him to say it again. I could tell she was just about splitting herself holding back her laughter. And I knew I would not hear the end of this small question.

The asker of the most important question of all times is Christopher Rourke, our youngest grandson. He is 9 years old now and will be 10 in October.

Grandma then had Christopher ask me the question again as we drove along the highway back to his home. I had to have an answer without telling too much. Oh boy how much do you say to your inquisitive grandson.

Now to get the setting right, Christopher’s oldest brother, Jonathan, was sitting beside me in the front seat. He is 15, about 5 foot, 10 inches and a sharp looking teenager that is kind and capable. Christopher’s second oldest brother, Thomas, was sitting on the other side of Grandma and listening to Christopher’s interrogation.

So with a deep breath I stated that when Grandma and Grandpa met I was covered with something sticky like epoxy glue and Grandma couldn’t get rid of me. That smart enough answer had Jonathan and Thomas laughing and Christopher listening for what might come next. I mean he had a very serious question that he was intending to get answered.

So in a very short, thumb nail version I told the boys my side of the story. Grandpa had found Grandma.

I was 18 years old. I was at a church’s youth function and had come out of the church with another friend. Another friend, Harry, pulled up in front of the church with his dad’s car and asked us a question. “Which one of you guys want a date tonight? I am going over to see if I can pick up a girl... but she won’t go without her friend. Which one of you will help me out?”

Standing at the side of the car we looked at each other. My friend Gord said, “I can’t. My dad said I had to get the car home early.”

So I looked at Harry and shrugged, “Okay I’ll go along, I’ve got nothing to do.”

I hopped in and we headed to the service station where Alida and Loreen were building their parade float. (The girls were playground supervisors that worked with children – and were preparing a float for the city parade.)

When we arrived Alida was trying to make a face for Zorro’s Horse. It actually looked like a Donkey, which she didn’t appreciate when I told her so. I made the face look better. We finished the task and the girls agreed to go out for a Coke.

That was 49 years ago in the next few weeks. Oh Boy!

The grandsons were stone still as they listened to this bit of history that Grandpa had never talked about yet. I knew there were going to be problems now… I had opened the magic box of all that I haven’t told them yet… or that their own mother’s (our daughters) have threatened me not to talk about (well at least some of it).

I stopped talking and then the little voice asked another question.

“Grandma, did you date anyone other than Grandpa?” the little voice asked.

Grandma answered, “No. Grandpa was my first boyfriend.” Then there was a pause. Everyone was listening closely now as we hummed along the highway. It was that pause that nearly kills you. What is coming next?

Grandma, being wiser, asked him, “Why did you ask Christopher?”

The small voice simply said in a rather not so confident way, “Well I have lots of girls that like me. One of them wants to be my girlfriend and she wants to go out sometime on a date.”

I held my smart answers or replies back… and Grandma told him, “Why don’t you tell the girl, ‘Thank you’, but I just want to be friends.”

“Okay…” he replied… and nodded his head in agreement.

I was sweating a little at this point. Jonathan was quiet and so was Thomas. They knew it was Grandpa’s turn to confess.

God… I don’t like the pause…

I changed the radio station and found some more interviews on the CBC. Ahem!

Okay. Okay. I had a few girlfriends. And some of them were… well… kind of like “Pick Ups”. I don’t remember any of their names… honest. It was what we did when we were that age. We drove around trying to ‘Pick Up Chicks’. And you could. That’s all. Stop there.

Gas was cheaper then than now. And there was always a buddy that would go along with you.

Gord was our best man at our wedding. I was 23 years old and Alida was 21 (almost). Harry never married until he was in his mid thirties.

In a few weeks time we have to pick up the Grandsons again for more time at our home.

Jonathan had grinned at me… and the silence… and said, “I want to know more.”

Oh boy… I have a few weeks. But what do I tell them and what DON’T I TELL THEM?”

~ Murray Lincoln ~

Three Grandsons Jonathan, Christopher and Thomas

and this is Christopher...hat and costume are part of his Lang Pioneer Village experience

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