Saturday, October 13, 2012

Raising the Bar ... Day 12

There are certain days in my Thanksgiving month for which I am more than usually thankful. October 12 is one of them. This is the one day of the year when I can unabashedly celebrate one of the best friends a person could ever hope for.

He is always at the other end of the line when I need a sense of perspective or a broad shoulder. We were at a function together this summer and I was taken aback, when he administered a pop-psych quiz to me, at how well he knows me.

I think back to the days when we were a couple of decades younger and he introduced me to Clapton, Cockburn, Cohen and Coltrane. We used to spend ages breaking down an exact guitar cord or arguing about a passage of literature. I have no idea how many steak sandwiches we consumed at Caruszo's ...

One of my best memories of those early years in our friendship is driving pell-mell out to Seebe in order to watch the Northern Lights flip over the arc of the sky.The greens and pinks danced unselfconsciously to the hum of a melody just out of reach of our ears. 

The badinage of those carefree days has been replaced by a more sombre weightiness: the responsibilities and the cares of the world tend to press in more insistently than perhaps we would always like.

But still he rises to the top.

Gary is excellent at whatever he does; but what he does best is be a Dad to two of the smartest, most charming kids around.

He brings them out to the TH when he can, because they want to "work." He patiently sits and lets them crawl all over him, lets them order pink tea, lets them choose books to read.
Refilling apple-juice-milk

He remains calm when they come back to the kitchen, and doesn't cavil at being left alone while they hang out with us. He takes care in choosing what they will eat, but he doesn't make it onerous for them in any way.

They bring out the best in him and he brings out the best in them.
Handing out Ovations mint sticks

My friend has been forced to ford some choppy waters this year; but he has comported himself with intelligence, honour and graciousness. 

Happy birthday, prince among men. I don't tell you nearly often enough how grateful I am that you are part of my world.

And if you tell me these kids are too young to work, well, I'll have to call my lawyer ...


  1. Karyn, as always I am at a loss for words. There's a reason the kids happily put up with a 3 hour round trip. Thank you.

  2. Nice piece, Karyn. Reminds me of what we are missing way out here in Virginia. Any chance the kids could handle a 50 hour road trip (one way)?
    Missing my nephew and niece.
    Sue Kirk


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