There was a “car bingo” in Wadena and Grandpa J won a 1956 Meteor.
It was Grandpa’s birthday yesterday. He died when I was about 21, leaving me with many fond memories: always keeping chocolate ice cream in his deep freeze for our visits; playing rummy with me for hours at his kitchen table; never driving out to our farm without chocolate bars for us kids; and many, many more.
Like the time I’d just gotten my learner’s licence and drove his car, with him in the passenger seat, too fast around a deep, sharp curve on the road out of town. His fingers dug into the dashboard and he exclaimed, when we safely rounded the corner (curve), “Damn near killed me!”
Grandpa was a kind, gentle man who gave me, a mischievous, yappy child, the gift of unconditional love and appreciation. Maybe he’s the reason I still assume that kind of love is possible and that I deserve it, no matter what.