I think I have a very good reason for saying that my Dad is the greatest dad on the planet. Actually, I have several very good reasons.
For one thing, he’s never failed to support me. No matter what I’ve ever said I wanted to do, he always told me I could do it. When, at age 7, I said that I wanted to be a mechanic or an engineer, he gave me an old radio to take apart and reassemble as practice. The fact that it didn’t go very well and after putting it back together I had four parts left over, is neither here nor there! And when I said that I wanted to be a nurse, he told me I could easily do that, but that I would have to make sure that I studied hard. Even when I said that I wanted to be an actor, he didn’t laugh or scoff. He just told me that if that’s what I wanted then I should go for it, but to make sure that I studied hard so that I had something to fall back on.
Another reason why he’s the greatest dad, is that he adores my Mum. He always gives her a hug and a kiss goodnight, even after almost 60 years of marriage, and has openly said that he would be totally lost without her. *cue a mass exclamation of “Aaawwww!”*
He’s also hilariously funny and never fails to make me laugh, often at the most unexpected times. One such occasion was a few months ago when he and I went into town together. We had done a lot of shopping and although the weather was fine, it was beginning to get cold, so we decided to head for home. Rather than getting the bus, we thought that we would walk the short distance to the local taxi office. Once there, we ordered a taxi and the lady on the switchboard told us it would just be a few minutes. We therefore took a seat and waited.
Not long after, a man who was quite obviously drunk, came in and sat down next to us. Despite my best efforts to ignore him, he promptly tried to engage me in conversation. I was as polite and civil as I could be, and successfully parried his pointless inquiries with monosyllabic replies. When he asked if he could tell me something and went on to say, “You are so beautiful. I really mean that. God, you’re beautiful.” I smiled politely and thanked him. He then followed up with, “What’s your name?”
“Eleanor” I replied.
“Well, Eleanor, you are so beautiful.” he said…again.
“Thank you,” I said…again, and then gesturing to my Dad, said “And this is my Dad, William.” I was rather hoping that introducing my dad would prompt him to shut up, but I was wrong.
He leaned across me and shook my Dad’s hand, before saying, “Are you a pit man?”
My Dad shook his head. “No,” he said, “I was a production engineer.”
“And this is your daughter?” asked the guy.
“Yes. My youngest daughter.” answered my Dad.
“How many daughters have you got?”
At this point, I knew my Dad was building up to something, primarily because I know full well that I don’t have four sisters! I knew that I would have to try hard not to laugh.
“Five daughters?” said the guy.
“Yep,” my Dad nodded, “And four sons.”
I bit my lip. I have two sisters and one brother, so the fact that my Dad was spinning a drunken stranger a yarn that he had five daughters and four sons, was amusing to say the least. As for the guy, he was now wide-eyed. I, meanwhile, was eagerly awaiting the punchline.
“Five daughters and four sons?” said the guy.
“Yep,” my Dad nodded again, “I was a very productive production engineer.”
Bingo! How I managed not to laugh out loud, I have no idea, especially when I saw that they guy was none the wiser to my Dad’s tall tale and had bought the whole thing hook, line and sinker!
A moment later and the conversation threatened to take a surreal turn as the guy asked us both what we liked and didn’t like. Fortunately, the moment the question left his lips, the lady on the switchboard told him that his taxi was outside and he promptly got up and left. I say fortunately, because he didn’t hear my Dad’s reply to his question.
“Likes and dislikes. Well, I’m not keen on drunken men trying to chat up my daughter.”
My Dad really is the greatest dad on the planet…and I love him more than words could ever say!