When I was little it was Nanna and Pa’s house. I have some really faint memories of that time, but sadly Nanna passed away when I was just four, and then it was Pa’s house. ‘Going up to Pa’s’ meant chocolates and soft drink and a bottom drawer full of toys in the kitchen. It was repeatedly asking Pa to read me the same nursery rhyme from his orange book, for some reason I was obsessed with ‘The Man in the Moon‘.
As I got older, going up to Pa’s meant playing rounds of poker for pennies, games of crazy eights and rummy, occasionally a game of boules in the loungeroom. It meant chatting to him as he hung out his washing, watered the roses or cooked his lunch. It meant good conversation. Sometimes Pa would tell me stories from when he was a child, or when my dad was. It was always a joy to listen to him speak of the past. My favourite stories were the ones that involved Nanna, the way his face would change as he spoke of his beloved Eileen.
Going up to Pa’s always made me feel good. Pa never spoke to me like a was a child, even when I was one. We we always equals. No matter what was going on in my life, I knew that if I went up to Pa’s I would feel better. But it’s not as if I had to pour my heart out and tell him waht was wrong. It wasn’t like that. Just being around Pa made me feel calmer. Pa always made me feel special, always made me feel worthwhile, always made me feel loved.
Rest in Peace, Pa. I hope you knew just how much you meant to me. I’ll miss you always.