A couple of years ago I published this post to wish my dad a Happy Birthday. This year I thought I’d publish the English version. It’s the same, but different.
Happy Birthday, aita!
Valentine’s Day. To be honest, this has never been a very important day in my life, as far as romanticism is concerned, but that doesn’t mean February 14 is not filled with love. Sixty-four years ago today “My Fernando” was born – as my mom likes to call him when she catches my friends and I messing with the opposite sex. “Yes, they’re all the same, except my Fernando!” And that after 40 years of marriage.
And who can blame her? Who acted as our guinea pig without a word of complain while my sister and I braded his hair? (Yes, yes, once upon a time he did have hair). Who helped us with puzzles? Who took me every weekend without fail to see the Ortuella soccer games with my tío Guillermo? And who worked tirelessly all his life to buy us clothes, food, pay for our university and even the plane ticket when I infamously left for Boise only five minutes after graduation?
I’ve heard people say my dad is serious and quiet when they first meet him. Please, don’t let him fool you. Nothing could be further from the truth. He’s got a great sense of humor and can talk your ear off. Unlike his daughters though, he knows when it’s time to shut up.
My dad is a remarkable person; I don’t know anybody that thinks otherwise. I remember when the Lemoniz nuclear plant was closed and he stayed unemployed for several months. I was young and didn’t notice much change. Now that I’m older and have my own kids, I imagine those were very tough times for my parents. But I don’t recall there being stress or troubles, all I can see is my dad sitting at his desk for hours, Rubrick cube in both hands and the instructions booklet on the table, until he finally managed to fix them, because they were wrong. My dad doesn’t know how to sit back and do nothing.
And don’t get me started with how amazing he is with my kids. Along with my mom, they make Andoni and Maitane the happiest grandkids every single time.
ZORIONAK, AITA! Asko maite zaitut!
- Hit and run, Idaho style
- Do you know why we celebrate Valentine’s Day?