Three weeks is a long time to wear a shower cap and to slather your scalp with Vaseline. And those three weeks are over. The nurse Blanca praised Dad’s head as she bent over him to cut and gently pull each black stitch—“Your head is healing beautifully!”—which Dad said did not hurt except when the stitch was glued to a wisp of white hair, and then he grimaced, as anyone would to have hairs plucked out from healing scar tissue. The relief of a stitch-less head counterbalanced the strain of the trek. Dad and I conversed on the drive home about Joe Rantz and his gold-medal eight-man rowing crew in the 1936 Olympic Games, who mastered themselves and their sport and found their gold-medal “swing,” and George Pocock, mentor and craftsman, builder of their sixty-foot-long cedarwood shell with its signature two-inch camber and gleaming shellac sheen, George who taught Joe about balance and harmony and teamwork and especially about trust, trust in his crew. And they out-rowed the Third Reich across the finish line and into history. And after pushing Dad in his wheelchair into the house, I pruned the rose bushes, just as Dad taught me five decades ago, snipping just above each bud, knowing last fall’s scraggle would now be this spring’s flourishing.
(Image by ❤ Monika 💚 💚 Schröder ❤ from Pixabay.)