I survived Thanksgiving without Dad.
Al & I spent the earlier part of Thanksgiving Day with the Torres tribe. I was so anxious about just getting through the holiday . . . what with Mom abroad and my Dad not physically with us. I was a little numb when we entered my sister- and brother-in-law's home. We were a little late with our contributions of salmon carpaccio and my usual busy salad. And I was a little overwhelmed during our Thanksgiving prayer before the lunch celebration. I rushed off to the bathroom and pulled myself together. I survived. With the help of three glasses of sangria.
Al & I were happy to retreat to Seaview in Galloway, NJ for a few days. It was fun to stay where actress Grace Kelly had her sweet 16 and engagement party. We've now returned well rested. The smell of a wood-burning fireplace made for a nice change of scenery. It was peaceful, relaxing and different from what we've done the past few years. Usually we're having Thanksgiving lunch with the Torres clan then rushing off to Jersey City or Stamford for Thanksgiving dinner with my side of the family. Only this year, Dad's not around . . . so it really didn't make sense to have to rush off anywhere. We needed to do something different. Not a day goes by that I don't think about my Dad.
I am so grateful to have spoken to some of my parents' friends over the holiday weekend. Tito Vic called, and his thoughtfulness warmed my heart so. It was great to hear Tito Willy's voice. He'll be traveling to Narvacan over the winter season and asked how long Mom would be in the Philippines. I also spoke with Uncle Rey and Auntie Cora in Chicago -- my parents' best friends who matched them together. I'd mentioned that Al & I were spending some time near Atlantic City, and Uncle Rey shared that he & Dad used to borrow their friends' car and head down to Atlantic City with their ladies (Auntie Cora & Mom), all before Atlantic City was the casino central it is today. No boardwalk, just open air. When Auntie Cora got on the phone, she cried. She always tries so hard to hold back her tears, never successfully. She, Uncle Rey and Dad have been close friends since high school.
It's different . . . without Dad.