Saturday, June 18, 2011

{ Dad, The French Riviera, Boyfriends, & the One I Married }

As Father's Day approaches, I find myself recalling various memories and words of wisdom my Dad has given me. Such as, "Never eat prunes in large quantities." and "Make sure you're old enough to legally drink at your own wedding." and "When you drink alcohol. Do it with class and sophistication. Otherwise, you'll only look cheap."
My Dad has never been the type to intimidate the guys I dated by sitting in the living room cleaning his shotgun. Instead, he trusted that I would have enough sense in my own head to come to the conclusion and see in these boyfriends what he recognized immediately----that they were Numbskulls (his word, not mine).
Long before I was able to date, my Dad would joke that he was going to take me to the French Riviera to find my husband when it was time for me to marry---- a rich and foreign husband for me so that my Dad could retire in style. He brought this joke up so many times that at some point it blended into future plans....or at least I thought so. I'd picture us on the beach in the French Riviera surveying the bachelors. It was a grand plan!

My first crush was the actor, Ricky Shroeder, from Silver Spoons. To this day I can't pass up a bottle of Alberto VO5 shampoo in the store without thinking of Ricky Shroeder--It was his favorite shampoo according to an 80s issue of Tiger Beat magazine which I had begged my mom to buy me. My dad NEVER lets me forget that RS was my first crush. I secretly think he is still recovering from the day his little girl was old enough to have her first crush. Poor Dad.
My Dad had a rule: All boyfriends or guys I dated had to come to the door and say hello if they expected me to go out with them. Dad made it very clear about a zillion times that I would not be allowed to date anyone who did not have the courtesy to park their car, get out, ring the door bell, and say hello to my parents. There were a few times when boyfriends pulled up to the curb and honked their car horn. Dad would give me a look and I knew I would have to sit and wait until they came to the door. I use to think this was a silly rule, but, I quickly learned that my Dad had a point. Wise Dad.
Dad didn't care for any of my boyfriends except for one; the one I married. Out of the blue one afternoon, when David and I had been dating for almost a year, Dad told me, "You know, I really like David."  Me, "What made you say that?" Dad, "He always opens the car door for you even when he doesn't know I am watching." 
Before I met David, he had seen me numerous times and would tell his friends, "There is the girl I am going to marry." and he was right. Five years later, I did marry him. 

This is one of those cases where everyone lived happily ever after including good ol' Dad. My Dad loves David and treats him like a son. I can't help but laugh when I think of the guys I dated and introduced to my Dad. What a patient man he had been during those crazy years of my teenage angst. It was simple in the end, I fell for the guy with the same wonderful qualities as my Dad.
It turns out we didn't have to travel to the French Riviera, after all.

Sealed with a Kiss, Kirsten