I dreamed about Daddy. He visited us from Heaven. Mom had remarried and the other man, nice as he was, just wasn’t as clever as Daddy. We were discussing some problem on the farm and Mom had mentioned she wished she could remember what it was Bud had said about this problem. She was explaining the invention he had made, and how in his later years just couldn't accomplish it because he was on 12 liters of oxygen. He just didn't have the energy anymore. She had just said this and we were all regretting not paying better attention when Daddy walked in and sat down, like it was a normal thing to do. Then he began explaining his solution. He was talking in his usual technical, yet understandable manner, exactly what he meant. He grabbed a piece of paper, and began drawing the item he had planned to make. I don’t remember the problem we were discussing, or Daddy’s solution. I wish I could.
Daddy was such an intelligent and talented man. He could sit down and draw a blueprint on any scrap of paper, or on an official blueprint page. He once sent me a blueprint he had especially drawn for me of a bunk bed when I wanted to build one. His fine art skills were self taught and perfect. He never got a degree, yet he worked as a draftsman for Ball Brothers, and later was hired at NCAR (National Center for Atmospheric Research) to head up the machine shop where they built rockets to test the air. He designed the shop, purchased the equipment and hired the men. It was said that, back in the early '60's, it was one of the cleanest and quietest in the nation. He had acoustical ceiling and flooring installed. It was unlike the norm for industrial machine shops of the day which usually left the floor concrete and the ducts and vents overhead. Everyone thought he was crazy to put in tile floors because they erroneously believed they would just get ruined. But the men were taught to sweep up their milling clutter rather than step on it and grind it into the floor. Because of the acoustical ceilings the noise from the machines was reduced so drastically they had music playing over speakers. Every Friday they had a pizza party. Daddy provided the English muffins and everyone brought their favorite pizza topping. Then they baked them in their special oven that could get as high as 2000. Because it could get so hot, the pizzas were done in minutes.
So there he sat, carefully explaining his invention and drawing the plans like he used to do like it was totally normal to come back from the dead and join in the conversation. I was so thrilled and delighted to have him there, but he wasn't exactly as I remember him just before he died.
I remember staring at him then turning away, because it is not polite to stare. For some reason, someone was sitting between Daddy and me. So I had to either lean back or forward to see him. He looked young. His skin was fair with no wrinkles, his hair neatly coiffed, unlike the wild way he used to wear it before he died. I was attributing it to the makeup they put on the corpse in the funeral home, but I knew that couldn’t be it, because Daddy had been cremated.
None of us ran over to him and hugged him or welcomed him much as we all wanted to because we didn’t think we would be allowed to in his ghostly state. Or maybe we thought we would break the spell if we did, so we all just acted like it was totally normal to have him come to visit. He wasn’t really like a ghost, he was just like he was alive, except about 25 or maybe 35 years old and not 78. I wanted to hug him so badly and express my delight to see him again.
It was so delightful to see him again that when I awakened and realized it was a dream, I just lay there, eyes closed, trying to finish the dream. I haven't had a dream of Daddy since I was in college. Why is that?
I’m sad I didn’t get to visit with him longer and hear his voice longer. I awoke happy, yet really sad too.
I don’t often write down my dreams, but this one I didn’t want to forget, short as it was.
I miss you Daddy. . .