Updated: Jul 19, 2019
8:00 AM Wake-up
Vacation Final Day
McCloud, CA Departed Noon O'Clock
I've spent the last 24 hours thinking about a journal entry that related back to my initial theme of chronicling conversations. I had a good one at the 4th of July barbecue with a gentleman with far more experience in this life than I have.
I( wasn't going to breach this next topic much, but as I wandered through the airport to find my gate so that I could sit down and write before boarding the red-eye to Nashville, I nearly crashed into my mother.
This morning, upon awakening and seeing 3 text messages from mom, I knew Grandpa Woodward was gone before she answered my return phone call.
It wasn't entirely unexpected, but it came a little bit quicker than we were prepared for. He was ready, and it brings some peace knowing that he is no longer suffering.
I will fondly remember my time with Grandpa. Grandpa's greetings were the best, most genuine greetings of any I've ever received. Every time I saw him, it was the same. "Hello, Dustin!" Huge smile, hand on shoulder, hug. His joy when I came to visit was always evident and something that I'll never forget.
I will also never forget the last time we saw him. We spent Easter in Santa Rosa. He smiled through his pain, laughed while my crazy kids hunted Easter Eggs, and was without a clue when Ace and Hope followed "Big Grandpa" out on his walk. I'm glad I got a picture of that.
Sara dropped me off at the airport several hours early for my flight tonight so that she could get home and go to bed at a sane hour. My mom and dad's flight into San Francisco was delayed. While walking to my gate, I was chuckling at the poor folks frantically walking/jogging/running because making their connecting flight was clearly in jeopardy.
Then, right in front of me stood my parents. It was a tough day with thoughts and memories of grandpa coming and going, accompanied by the occasional tear. It was nice to end the day with some hugs from mom and papa.
Charles from McCloud and his stories about the Hearst Castle on half a million acres or Steven Seagal's 5,000 acre cattle ranch in Montague, just North of Mt. Shasta will have to wait.