Our household was always filled with music. Whether it be records being played, Mom's lovely voice trickling from the kitchen or Dad blowing the harmonica or strumming his ukulele. Song was a huge part of my childhood.
Today is Father's Day and I am missing my Dad no less than I did when he passed away in 1999. Harold Lester Rapier left behind a legacy with his ten children. I am his youngest daughter. We had a very special relationship. Of course my other siblings might argue that they were his favorite, but I know deep down I was the one held dearest *snort*. He always made time to make me feel special amongst the fiery brood of children in the house. He'd take me to his barbershop on Sundays to help him clean. Most often I dilly dallied with a broom while he wrote to the Daily Journal's Voice of the People column. When he had a motorcycle I'd willfully tag along no matter where he went. He told me I was the perfect riding partner as we went for bum numbing long rides through the countryside. On the sly he'd invite me to go to The Golden Bear restaurant for ice cream sundaes.
All of those special memories pale in comparison to sitting at our family upright piano with the song book open to the following song. Dad nor I played piano. With his trusty ukulele in hand we'd share the piano bench. I'd sing while he strummed out the tune. Together we'd say with great emphasis, "quack, quack, quack." He'd sneak in a zerbit** or raspberry on my cheek which would send me into a fit of giggles.
Dad wasn't without flaws. Yet, it's with a full heart that I can recall so many indelibly joyful memories so that the difficult periods are nearly erased. You never truly know what things your children will remember about you when they grow up. Always assume that the most minute, flash in time could be the single most important memory your children think of later in life.
**putting your lips and blowing hard on someone's skin to make a quick, burst of flatulence sound