Thursday, March 13, 2008

Red sky at morning...

...sailors take warning. Red sky at night, sailors delight.

My father used to say that all the time. He was old-fashioned, and an older dad when I was born. He would be 97 if he were still alive.
This morning's eastern sky seemed redder than the photo would indicate. But at least I was inspired to go for the camera.

As a post script to my Tuesday post about my father, the rest of the story is that he died two months before I was going to graduate from college, a college he had dreamed of me attending. I know he was so proud he was able to send his only child there. It was back in the day, when there were still women's colleges. Yes, I went to an "all-girls" school. But I digress.
After the funeral, I had to go back to school, finish up my senior year and all that entails, and graduate without my father. He should have been sitting in the audience next to my mother on that lovely May day.
It was devastating.
It sent me into a tailspin that, looking back, took a long time to climb out of - a long time. I had a few short-lived jobs in retail as I tried to get my act together. My mother worked, and since I was living with her I spent a lot of long days at home alone.
Depressed. Direction-less.
Can you guess I had very few friends? Everyone I knew from high school and college was getting on with their lives and careers. They were busy. I wasn't. One good friend got married just a week after she graduated from college and moved to England. That was difficult. I was happy for her, but...we lost touch.

Then one fateful day I applied for a job at a newspaper.
'Nuf said. Here I am.

Thanks for listening.


Christy said...

I say the exact same thing when I see red skies. My Mom taught me that saying. Mmm but if I see a red circle around the moon, but not a red sky, it means something bad. Blood around the moon.

Lynn said...

My dad was an older dad too. The thing about having had older parents is that the fear of them dying was always there for me. The devestation, depression, and tailspin that you described are completely understandable. Had I known you then, I would have given you a hug, lent you an ear, and stuck by you. Since I didn't know you then, I offer them all to you now ((HUGS)). Thanks for opening up:~)

Empress Bee (of the high sea) said...

i always say that red sky thingy too!

smiles, bee

Linda said...

My grandfather was the one who told me that saying and every time I see a red sky or red morning, I say it and think of him.

Sometimes our lives go in directions that we certainly don't want them to but there's always a reason.

Casdok said...

I went to an all girls school too.
Sounds a very lonely road for you.
But fate played its part.
Beautiful photo.

the moose buyer said...

Thanks for the interesting story. I have to tell you it's tough losing parents you love no matter how old you are. Based on what I have been reading the past year on your blog, I am sure you turned out pretty darn good after all.

Odat said...

Beautiful shot!!

I'm glad you're beginning to get that "stuff" out and on paper!! Yeah!!!
I can certainly relate to your feelings.


Michele said...

Oh Patti.. great post. Learned a little bit more about you. First, that's a beautiful photo... wow, great colors, hey? Nice. I wrote briefly about that in my Earth weather blog here Red sky at Night
Your father was indeed a wise man.
I'm glad to see u writing, it's good. I'm proud of you Patti... (Hug)

Sarah Caron said...

Oh Patti . . . That's so sad, but you did pull yourself out of it.

My grandfather - who served as my father for much of my childhood - passed away unexpectedly less than a month shy of my college graduation.

It came out of nowhere. I clearly remember when I found out - I was supposed to have a Spanish oral exam and had been studying with my group for our class. I had about 45 minutes before the exam and headed towards my dorm to pick up my notebook or something. As I turned onto Amsterdam Ave. from College Walk/116th Street, my cell phone rang. It was my mother so I answered. "Sarah, I'm so sorry." was all she had to say and I knew. I just knew.

In shock, I went to find my professor. I stopped in and told my group that I was sorry, but I just couldn't sit for our oral that day (we did it a week later) and told my professor that my grandfather had just passed . . . I think I was in shock. I didn't know what to do with myself.

After that, it was hard to go back to school. I spent my last month commuting between New York and Connecticut. I was just so restless.

Patti said...

Christy: eek, never heard of blood around the moon.

Lynn: thanks for the hugs; I'm glad I opened up

Bee: I guess lots of people do!

Linda: I agree that there's always a reason.

Casdok: ah, another girls school grad! I'm actually glad my daughter is at a co-ed university.

Moosie: glad you think I turned out pretty darn good

Odat: thanks and I know you can relate to all this

Michele: thanks for saying you're proud of little ol' me

Sarah: wow, we have a lot in common. I didn't realize that he died at that time in your life.
Sorry to read that. I know you were very close to him.