Today is my grandpa's 90th birthday. He has lived for nine decades. Nine times longer than Michelle, more than twice as long as I have lived. He has, I'm sure, seen a lot and experienced a lot in those 90 years. He is my only surviving grandparent.
We are having a big party for him in two weeks, but my aunt had us over for dinner, cake and ice cream tonight. It was wonderful to see my grandpa, and very nice to see some aunts, uncles, and cousins that I don't see as often as I would like.
My cousin began asking my grandpa questions, and he answered them. He is a very quiet man and doesn't talk much about his life, so it was interesting to hear what he had to say.
She asked what he thought was the greatest invention in his lifetime. He said the computer. It's amazing what they can do. Then he talked about the first time he got a car...a model T. He talked about being a mechanic in the military. He was young, but he knew how cars worked and by the time he was finishing the military he was in charge of repairing many military vehicles and was also in charge of many mechanics of lower rank. After the military, he opened an auto shop. He owned and worked in an auto shop on 3900 South for many, many years although I think he said he opened a shop in a different location to begin with. (I missed out on parts of the conversation as I helped my kids.)
My grandpa is a hard worker. He is a calm, quiet man who loves his family and loves animals. He and my grandma have always had pets...dogs and cats and sometimes when I was young they even had pet ducks. He has a poodle named Rex that adores him. He doesn't ever leave the house for more than an hour or two unless he can take Rex with him. He says that by the time he gets home from church each week, Rex acts as if he's been gone for months.
My aunt and uncle spend a lot of time at his house, helping him. My uncle said tonight that often when they are working in the yard, neighbors will stop and talk to them and ask how my grandpa is doing. Two different people have given their names and phone numbers to my aunt and uncle and said they'll check in on him anytime. My uncle said that you can tell that people really love him.
We love you, Grandpa! I'm thankful for the example you have always set for me. I'm thankful that I was able to learn a little bit more about your life tonight.