Monday, March 10, 2008

March Is Birthday Month

March is the month that means the most to me. First of all, Saint Patrick's Day is March 17th and, being Scot-Irish, that makes it an important day for me. But even more than that, the day following Saint Patrick's Day, March the 18th, is a day my dad and I shared from the moment I was born until the day my father died. It was our mutual birthday. He was once the rudder of my ship until the day I had to sail it on my own, rough seas or quiet harbor. I miss that I can't call him when I need reassurance or a dose of wisdom any more.
Back when everyone used to have to renew their driver's license every four years, my dad and I happen to renew it on the same year. We used to dress in costumes to have our pictures on our new license. We had a good time thinking of new costumes each time. I remember being a cowgirl once and wearing a lavender Nehru jacket for another one.
For one very special birthday, the first year after my mother died, my dad, who worked as a meteorologists for a TV station, wore a kilt complete with a skindu (little knife). He wore it against the adversity of friends and family and he did it for me. I loved him even more for that. It's a good thing that they didn't have metal detectors and weapon scanners then because Jimmy Carter, who later became president, was on the show that day and Pop had that skindu in the top of his stocking (you know, the knee socks). There was no fuss what-so-ever about the little knife. My how things have changed.
I wrote THE VIOLIN for my dad. His brother, John, died at age 21 in 1927 while he was fly fishing with his friends. Pop talked about him with such love and admiration and so I felt compelled to bring John back to life and give him the life and love he deserved to have but didn't get the chance to have.
To my dad, wherever his spirit may reside, I wish him happy birthday and for the rest of you, a Gaelic blessing: Slan's beannachd! (Health and a blessing!)
Sarah McNeal

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