A Family Affair
I was raised to keep family first. A Family Affair can mean different things to some people. Sometimes it can mean an event the family is having together. Another way to look at it is as a personal matter that concerns no one else but the family itself. I like to think of it as a bit of both with a little extra mixed in. My family holds a strong bond, and we are much closer than most. There is nothing we don’t do together. We are as close-knit as it comes, and it comes hard.
Since I can remember we knew the meaning of sharing.
My sister would go to Daddy’s garage after dinner. A tradition held by the eldest always. This was passed down from generation to generation. I never knew exactly what they did in there, but knew I wanted to be included. Daddy’s tools on the wall always seemed to clank at a steady beat for about 5 minutes, then the vacuum cleaner would startup. My sister always came back with candy and a change of clothing. Sometimes she got to wear Daddy’s t-shirts, I was always jealous. A Family Affair affects all members, and I was no exception.
A Family affair is different than other affairs.
A few years down the road, I got a taste of Daddy’s secret hangout time. The garage was off-limits of course, that was only for the eldest. I was the youngest, and there was a place for me too in all this! One day I was walking home from school and Daddy drove by in his truck. He pulled over to the side of the road. Popping his head out the window he said “Get in, I ain’t gonna bite, ya little sweet thang.” I was overjoyed! I knew it was my day. The time had finally come to see what goes on behind our family’s closed doors.
A family affair to be proud of.
The car ride with Daddy was long but exciting. It wasn’t a far drive, but my skin was crawling in goosebumps. What was I to expect? No one ever peeped a word. All everyone knew was that something would happen with Daddy. Was he magical? Why did my sisters look so different after they saw him in private? It’s like they had a glow about them. I can’t even explain it, I just knew I wanted what they had. Mamma had given me a clue earlier that day. I still didn’t know what it meant. She said, “Pretty soon, you will close your eyes tight and wish you were somewhere else.” Did she mean I would daydream during this car ride and want to be with Daddy finally?
We were finally home.
Daddy was pulling up the driveway making a turn around to the back of the house. He held my hand while we took a little walk to our neighbor’s house. They were practically family too. A family affair of all kinds I suspected. Maybe they had a special place for Daddy and me? Our neighbor Fred walked with us to his barn house and finally sat me on a bail of hay. Daddy smiled and sat down next to me. Suddenly a funny knock came on the door and Fred opened it up. One by one the neighborhood daddies came in. They stood in a line behind Fred. I looked at Daddy and said, “Are they here to play too?”