July 31st, 2005

crafty-ipod

Happiness is..

The good sort of happy sort of "secret".
Hotels, during tourist season here are ruinously expensive. A night at Motel 6 during the summer is 100 dollars. A night at the Sheraton *starts* at 200. They sell out at those prices. We are a very hot tourist destination for Europeans and Asians. It's a bit prohibitive to come up for a week when the hotel room can cost close to 1000 dollars.
So my dad's got a new job, working for a guy he really likes who owns a condo complex, and owns, in the complex 25 condos of his own. He rents them out through word of mouth, 1400 a month, but is willing to rent by the night. 50 dollars.
Nice condos, full kitchens, fully furnished, and maid service. He even gives his guests a nice big gift basket. Thick plush carpeting, absolutely beautiful.
He does it through word of mouth. You need to know someone to get a room.
You know me.
It's a happy sort of secret.

My dad really likes this guy. He's working harder then he has for years, and is exhausted, but like Mike when he moved to the Sheraton is so much happier working for someone he can believe in that it's not even funny. He's an old man, 80 years old, and tall and thin and deeply decent. He reminds my dad of my grandfather, which is, in my family a very high compliment indeed. My grandfather died young, but was so deep down decent he left a legacy that has never been forgotten. I finally made the leap to realize a lot of what I didn't understand about my son is nature vs nuture. He is like my grandfather. Grandfather had a sort of naive nature that was inspiring, like my mother did, but grandpa was a bit more realistic. The sort of natural born leader who leads by the fact that people feel as though they are so much more then they know, better then they know because he believes it. You don't want to disappoint people like that, don't want to see them grow cynical. He was deeply moral and very good. So the highest compliment my dad can give is "Your grandfather would have liked him" , or the highest compliment he gives usually. To say that someone reminds him of grandfather.. I've never heard him say that before. My grandfather taught me to read. I was very young when he died, but remember sitting in his lap and he would read me whatever he was reading, underlining words. The newspaper, the Bible, whatever. There is a particular scent that So. California has during the summer, the hot pavement and the holly that grew around my grandparents house because my Grandma went by the name holly. The scent of original chapstick. All these things remind me of being very young and it's a very safe, very loved feeling. Grandpa left me that legacy. I learned to read very very young because my mother and him believed I could. I remember when it all snapped for me, my memories aren't as clear as they used to be, but I still remember back to about 9 month old even if some of those memories are dim, the first word I read was Mom, and then I realized upside down it was wow. I was about 3, maybe a bit younger. It was only a week from that to reading Dick and Jane type books on my own, by the time I was 7 I was reading books without pictures. I didn't read picture books very long at all.
I keep saying, relativelly speaking, I'm normal, I'm ordinary, my family is full of lunatics and heroes and people who are so much larger then life that they leave legacies and change worlds. Even now, I imagine my mother leaves her touch on people who've never even met her through me.
---
The bead show was singularly uninspiring. I spent about 70 dollars. I got the clasps I meant to get, and splurged on some pretty vintage flowers, and some old/new leaves in colors I liked. I was in and out in about a half hour. Then I went to Hot Topic and found in the clearance section a Legolas keyring but only one, for 50¢, so I got it for R, AND found a pair of limited ed. camo Chuck Taylors for 11 dollars. Naturally they didn't have my size, but did have William's. So I got William a pair. His first pair of brand name shoes. He was thrilled.

-Shala
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