Friday, June 13, 2008

Yo, Pop. I miss ya.

I never called my dad Pop. It was always Dad or Daddy or more often Daaaaaaaaad. Anyhoo, with Father's Day on Sunday, I thought I'd do this little tribute to the man who raised me, spoiled me, loved me unconditionally, and taught me patience. He had an abundance of it.

My dad was born in 1904 and lived a mostly healthy 87 years. He came to America when he was 20 years old in the hopes to start a new life, work hard and find the American Dream. He landed in San Francisco first, traveled along the west coast, finding jobs in Seattle, Alaska, Los Angeles and finally in a remote Southern California desert town. Somewhere in between, he became a United States Citizen and served in WWII.

When he began his life in the desert, he worked at a then-famous (built in the 40s) desert resort/inn, catering to many Hollywood types like Clark Gable, Gene Autry, boxer Joe Luis, Phyllis Diller, Gregory Peck, as well as Roy Rogers and Dale Evans who loved the community so much they built their home there.

I have no idea where this photo was taken. For some reason, I have it in my head that it's Seattle. But I'm probably wrong. I'm guessing it was taken in the early 50s.

Again, I don't know where this photo was taken either, but those houses in the background scream Los Angeles to me. Cool car back there, too. Wonder who it belonged to?

At the resort. The pool was kept heated during the winter months. Something very unique back then.

Working at the inn.

Another one at the resort.

Hitting golf balls into the empty desert. Perhaps near his house? At a friends?

Fast forward...oh, 10-15-20? years:
In the mid-to-late 60s, my mom worked as a nanny for the man who owned the desert resort.
Man meets woman (1966), they get married (1967) and a child is born (1968).
He has his first child at the age of 64: me! He's dressed in his work clothes for the inn.

Me again, 1968.

A typical Sunday. Must be 1969.

Sometimes it snows in the desert.

A party where we got all dressed up, Christmas 1970. Possibly at the resort.

Well, when you grow up Catholic, it's expected to get your holy communion when your around 7.

Sometime in the 80s, my dad is honored as one of the very first pioneering Filipinos in the High Desert. Go Dad! PS: Thanks for going there and meeting mom.

At my high school graduation party at the 'resort' which at this time turned into a hokey throwback to the 50s. Too bad. But they still had pretty good food. Pay no attention to the girl with the big glasses and big hair.
edit: Jimmy reminded me that I had contacts and short hair by graduation so this pic was actually taken in 1982 when I was in the 10th grade. By 11th grade I had chopped off that crazy big hair.

Both of my parents walking me down the isle.

Happy Father's Day to all fathers, past and present and all men who have the hearts of father's.
Peace out.


Anonymous said...

Love. Love this post so much. Happy Fathers day to the man who raised such an amazing daughter. He had to be very special indeed.

Anonymous said...

Wow Madeline, that is SO awesome that you have those pictures. I remember your parents walking you down that aisle....
Great tribute to your dad :)

Anonymous said...

You made me cry! - v xoxo

ren said...

those are excellent pictures! i love the one where he is sitting on the couch holding you (and you are a little unfocused there...heh) with cute dog sitting by.

Ragged Around the Edges said...

Oh, what a beautiful tribute to your father and how proud he must be of you.

Ginnie said...

What a fabulous tribute to your dad, Mad. My dad's father was 70 when dad was born, so I share a bit of your history. Very unusual back in that day! It's great to see the progression of photos here. What a heritage for you!

Lilli & Nevada said...

such a lovely tribute to your father.
Great photos, good to remember isn't it?

rosemary said...

You did him proud! What a lovely tribute. He was blessed to have you.

Anonymous said...

I love this post because it's so personal and gives a bit of insight about you and your family.

Thank you so much for the nice comments on my blog...after reading your profile, seems like we have a few more things in WATER SIGN!!!

See you again in August...

mommy said...

What a beautiful tribute to your daddy. I love the wedding picture. You're absolutely glowing and your parents look so proud. :)

mary jane said...

What a wonderful essay. I just popped in via Andrea, and found a lovely treat! I love the chimney-building episode too.