An Ode To My Grandfather
While standing as close to my mother as I possibly could, I was introduced to my uncle, who looked just like my mom. My cousins, eagerly waved at me.
The drive to my grandpas house, was the longest drive, I had yet to sit through. A whole day and a half of traveling; of flying, of sitting, of standing, some more sitting, some more standing. It just felt like one really long day. Us; my mom, brother, myself, my 2 cousins, my uncle and his wife plus our luggages, all packed in a small sedan. It was hot, musty, cozy. The views of open green land, toucan birds, cows, trees, blue skies, were endless. My uncle blaring country music, cuz we were, in fact, in the most country-est part of Brazil.
We’d stop at a rest stop, at least what I thought was a rest stop, but looked like someones house, with a gas pump. The restaurant we’d eat from, looked like someones kitchen. The bathroom? Around the corner, basically a room, with a hole in the floor. The food, tasted like my mothers cooking, the water; the most delicious water I had ever drank. Iced, cold, crisp, clear and refreshing.
Finally. What felt like 100 hours later, we turn onto, would have been the corner of the road to my grandfathers house. The roads at that time, did not exist. Instead, dirt; red, orange dirt. The dirt that would stain the bottom of your shoes. The dirt that made you take your shoes off, before entering anyones house, because it would leave a trail of orange shoe prints on the floor; that kind of dirt.
We drove down that dirt road. I remember seeing EVERYONE outside; waving, shouting. All this for us? why? I remember watching my mother, as tears rolled down her face, and a smile so big, her cheeks trembled. My mom was returning home. Her home. for the first time in 15 years.
I met my entire family, right there. These are people I’ve only heard about in stories that my mom would tell me. Characters that I imagined, through photographs, were all standing in front of me. These people loved me from afar, from a whole different time zone, country, land. Hugs and cheek kisses from my aunties, my grandma, cousins, and neighbors of neighbors and more neighbors
It was that day that I met my grandfather.
The tallest man in my family, staring down at me, in his deep, grandpa like voice: “Granddaughter. Finally. I meet you”...
To Be Continued...