Tag Archives: dad

You know you have neglected your blog for way too long when…

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… you can’t remember your username to log in to WordPress :o.

It is a serious crime, I am well aware.

It might of course have to do with the fact that my sleep pattern is heavily disturbed lately (so I pulled 2 allnighters in a row. what? there’s so much STUFF on this internet-thing), or the fact that I’m stressing out about my beloved PhD-work which has still not been published and because of which I may or may not be scooped by a Japanese group (don’t they have more urgent stuff on their mind? like a melting nuclear plant?) (and shouldn’t I have finished this ages ago instead of blaming the Japanese and trolling the internet?).

It may also have to do with the fact that my parents are coming to visit tomorrow. That’s good, right? I mean, I haven’t seen them since January. Damn, I have barely heard them. Literally. I called once to wish my dad a happy birthday. That was it.

I have called my parents once in over 3 months.

Now, I’m one of those forgetful people. Out of sight out of mind, you know. It’s not that I am so busy or I got a lot on my mind. I don’t (I should, though). It’s just… I get easily distracted. So yes, when you don’t contact me, chances are there’s not gonna be contact at all. Working quite unsuccessfully on that one, I promise.

So my parents call me. Biweekly, more or less, I’d say. Or well, they used to. The reason for that? Well…

I mean, of course, me and my mum… we’ve never been best friends. Something, somewhere went wrong, I don’t even know what, ’cause really, we’re both nice people. And we’re a lot alike, I hear. But I guess we’re just too different on those little things that really matter. And it doesn’t work. Her and me. Of course, the fact she didn’t talk to me for 3 months when I confessed my relationship with T didn’t help. We’re doing better now, but still… not BFFs. That and I’m not sure she knows how to work Skype yet.
My dad on the other hand… he is was my hero. He’s like… MY DAD. I know you’re not really supposed to have this admiration for your dad when you’re 29 years old, but I do did. As with my mum, I’m actually not really sure why this came to be, but I guess my dad’s just this cool guy, who’s a DIY-expert and helps me out and just generally supports me whatever I do.

So in short – my dad doesn’t call anymore. Because he is very well aware he’s lost his hero-status.

Last December, my dad was given a pacemaker because he has been… fainting, I guess. It appears his heart just… stops… once in a while, causing him to faint. It only happened 3 or 4 times, but when you know one of those times he was driving, you know something needed to be done. Hence, after many tests and checks: pacemaker.
And then, in January, he had another car accident. Let me align some facts on this particular incident.

  • it was a total loss
  • I was e-mailed (!) about this almost a week after it happened
  • although my dad admitted to having drunk ‘some’, he made it appear as if the main suspected cause was his heart

This already pissed me of, but only now we’re coming to the fun part

  • he had almost 4 times the allowed amount of alcohol in his blood

Now, I’m not sure I have mentioned this before, but I have a BIG problem with alcohol abuse. I cannot deal with drunk people. I simply cannot. I see no reason to spend a lot of money on an excuse to act irresponsibly and not remember any of it. And be proud of it, at that. I don’t even know why I feel so strongly about this topic, and I don’t really want to go into this here either, so let’s just keep it at that: I am strongly opposed to alcohol abuse.

(Between you and me, I’ve long maintained I feel my dad has an alcohol problem. He drinks on a daily basis, several glasses, and he gets cranky if for some reason he cannot have his drink at night. It’s the one flaw (that, and the fact he smokes. secretly.) I have had trouble with, but nobody shared my opinion – my dad was just a social drinker (really? while watching tv on his own?) and had it under control.)

And then my dad goes and crashes his car in the middle of the night having close to 2 promilles of alcohol in his blood. That should NOT happen. It míght happen to an 18-year old going out for the first time and (terribly) misjudging his/her alcohol intake, but that is about as far as I’m willing to take it. No excuse. At. All.

Especially not if you try to cover it up as if it had a different cause.
And you don’t mention it for a week.

I’m overreacting. I know I am. But I just cannot read an e-mail from my dad anymore without thinking “you ass”. I cannot think of him without my blood starting to boil. I can’t look forward to their visit, to show them around in my life here and have dinner together because I don’t know what I’m gonna do if he orders a beer to go with the meal. As if the whole picture of my dad has crumbled and fallen apart and there’s nothing left.

“Who’s this guy and what has he done to my dad?”

I don’t know how to deal with this. I don’t want to mess up my parents’ visit by being a moaning jerk. But I don’t want to let it slip and pretend nothing’s wrong either.

I’m picking them up at the airport tomorrow morning at 8h30. Between that and passing by the lab before, I have some 3 hours of sleep left. I better get to it, or I will be too tired to be able to play pretend even if I wanted to ;).

A tale of snow and socks

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Yesterday when I was going home, I was knee-deep ploughing through the snow when I was thinking I had never walked through that much snow in my life.

(To be completely honest, I should clarify that I was walking next to the path through the pile of snow which had been cleared from said path. So the snow was only (very) locally knee-deep. Well, not actually knee-deep. But almost.
What can I say, I’m still a little kid sometimes.)

Now, where is the fun in walking ON the path?

But then it struck me: I had. Walked through that much snow, I mean. When I was 10. It was an experience never to forget and I’m sure you’ll soon understand why.

I was on my first skiing trip with the whole family when I was accompanying my dad to one of the ski-lifts. The lift was located a bit off-track, down a small but steep slope and when we got to the top of the slope, my dad wanted to say goodbye (there was no way I could go with him on the lift because the track at the end of it was way beyond my 10-year-old capabilities). But I refused – the line at the lift was long and I thought I could stand in line with him and chat a bit and then return when he got on the lift. I was in full my-dad-is-a-superhero-phase at the time, and I needed to be with him every possible moment ;).
So the moment came – my dad got on the lift and I got out of line to return and wait for him at the bottom of the track he was planning to do. I had learned how to ‘climb’ a slope by taking small parallel steps with my skis, and thus I began to climb the small slope that separated me from the center of the ski-area.

It didn’t work.

However hard I tried, however slowly and concentrated I did what I was taught – the slope was too steep and I kept sliding back down.

Time for plan B: take off the skis, and kick little holes in the slope as to make some stairs to climb up. I soon discovered that it would be hopeless if I also had to carry my skis, so I decided to abandon them (my superdad could pick them up later). But skis or no skis, the snow on the slope was so hard that I couldn’t possibly make the holes deep enough for me to find some stability.

By that time my sister had also joined me – she had found me struggling at the bottom of the slope and decided she had to help me. So despite my efforts to keep her up (“Don’t come down, you’ll never be able to get up there again!”), she came down. And despite her fighting spirit, we found no solution. We were trapped.

I am not so sure what happened next. I remember getting annoyed by the stiff skiing boots that are great for, well… skiing, but not so much for walking around, and even less for climbing a slope. I remember coming to the conclusion that the only way to get out of there was to circumvent the slope and go through the woods, where the snow was softer and the slope was less steep. However, I have no clue what got me to decide I had to take of my ski boots and walk back through the woods on my socks.

You read that right. I walked through snow that was literally knee-deep (for a 10-year-old) on my socks.

I could have well taken off the socks also...

I don’t know if my sister accompanied me on that crazy adventure (I think I “went out to get help”) – my next memory is of me sitting in the hotel, my feet red as they have never been before or after, rubbed by my mum to get the blood flowing again.

So here’s the lesson: don’t follow your dad everywhere.
Oh, and don’t go out at -9ºC when you’ve just washed your hair. It will freeze. Not that I have any recent experience with that. I just thought… it might be useful to know, maybe. (ahum)