Echoes

Time is mysterious. Sometimes it is cruelly slow. At other times it seems to speed up, gaining a velocity that seems to prevent us from accomplishing all the tasks we are responsible for completing.

Too much time; never enough.

Then, there are the moments when it feels as though time bends in on itself, bringing us closer to the past or dazzling us with visions from a possible future. Are these mental diversions,  illusions or hallucinations?

Perhaps they are images devoutly to be wished.

My father is gone. Three years now. That seems like yesterday and a lifetime ago. But he visits often. Not as an apparition, but the memories of his presence. As my life continues, I see parallels and echoes of his time on Earth, in my life.

My son and I are building a model plane. A replica WWII fighter, the Hellcat. It is not a plastic, snap together creation. No! This is constructed of balsa wood. With dozens of tiny pieces that need to be glued together. Delicate. Intricate. A highly complex endeavor. In other words, a pain in the ass! We have constructed the fuselage, the wing, and the tail. There are miles to go. As I survey our progress, (the various pieces and tasks left to be completed, the bits and parts that remain in a scattered heap at the side of the table), I realize I’ve seen this before: a box of balsa wood pieces covered in dust, a failed attempt at a model that remained unfinished and finally found its way to the trash one day when I was in my twenties.

Where did it come from?

Something my dad attempted and then abandoned. Was I involved? I don’t think so. I think it was his, a remnant of his boyhood or an adult attempt at recapturing a brief moment of youthful bliss. A reminder in a box, collecting dust.

And now, here it is again, a box of fragile wood showing up in my life. Rest assured, this will be completed or I’ll die trying!!!

I recall travelling to San Francisco with my parents, before they divorced. I was 8 or 9. We drove through different areas in northern California. It was grey. There was fog and friends of my parents who I didn’t really know. We made a visit to Pier 39 and at some point, my dad, I think, purchased a gyroscope for me. It was his attempt at generating a scientific interest in my mind. Didn’t really take hold, but that’s another story.

But then, there we were at the observatory gift shop the other day and our son decided that what he needed most out of all the scientific toys in the room was a gyroscope.

A gyroscope.

Time slips away and then coils up and springs back upon itself. Maybe these things are just coincidence, but maybe they are echoes of things that continue to reverberate throughout the universe.

Maybe we have ways of manifesting small things that mean a lot to remind of us of what was. Or perhaps I am merely in a sentimental mood.

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