Sunday, February 20, 2011

70 Years to Celebrate

Today is my father’s 70th birthday and and since he is primarily to blame for us moving to France in the first place, I thought it would be only fitting to dedicate this blog to him (not to mention the the fact that I failed to send a gift off in time and he'll be tres disappointed). First of all, my dad has always loved to travel and especially to meet new people and experience other cultures. So much in fact that he actually absorbs their mannerisms and changes his accent according to what language is being spoken. When I joked about Hank’s “Pepe Lapieu” accent in an earlier post, my father’s "talents" with multitple accents put my husband's to shame. And even though very little is usually understood by the kind, foreign victim of my father's attempts, the communication of humor and kindness has always been successfully conveyed.

In 2007, he and his wonderful wife, Ginny invited us to France to share a week with them in La Roque Gageac in the southwestern, Dordogne region of France. Since this was not their first trip to the region, my dad was an amazing tour guide (sorry Ginny, I cannot credit you as you deserve because as anyone who knows my dad can attest, he will expect this entry to be entirely about him) Anyway, they took us to Sarlat, Dome, Beynac Castle. We canoed, visited the caves where prehistoric man once lived and ate fois gras, walnuts (some of us actually went to a walnut museum if you can believe it) & baquettes until we had massive muffin tops.

In fact, we were so inspired by this trip that we began our decent into francophilia over the next few years and when we decided to put our house on the market and move to France two years ago, it was Wylie who said, "That's cool. Go for it!" So I listened to him for once and we did indeed go for it albeit not exactly as planned as anyone who has followed my blog knows.

And purchasing our farm probably would not have happened as smoothly had it not been for my father (and Ginny bien sur!) as I had inadvertently miscalculated dollars vs. euros right before the final transaction. And to think that I was a business manager for 25 wonder that I often felt like it was the wrong calling for me.

Anyway, so, now it's your big day Pops and unfortunately, I am not there to celebrate with you. But, as you can see now, it is actually your own fault if you really think about it. You taught me to venture out and embrace other cultures or I wouldn't be putting myself up to the embarrassing encounters I have with the locals every single day. You were right though. People are just people and as long as you try, they'll usually react kindly and most of the time, will even help you.

So, although I am very sorry that we are not physically there to share in this great (and tres vieux) celebration, we do plan to celebrate your 70th in style, in France, ensemble (together) in the Fall.

A santé Dad!

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