Our family celebrated Father’s Day in a wide variety of ways and oftentimes to an outsider some of our celebrations were non-traditional and well, sort of kookie. Unlike Mother’s Day where the celebration usually centered around Mom not having to cook on a Sunday for a change, Dad’s special June Sunday was usually spent with one of his favorite pastimes at the center of the day’s activity.
Now it would have been great for this little article had my Dad collected art pottery, but he didn’t. So no I did not go hunting for Roseville and McCoy vases with Dad. But we did hunt for a special fishing lure once that was supposed to help one snag the biggest Northern Pike you could imagine.
There was also the Father’s Day that Dad packed us all in the Chevy wagon, including Mom who was seven months pregnant with my youngest Brother Matthew, and took us to a day of Thoroughbred Horse Racing at Arlington Park Race Track. Now to most that would not sound so unusual except for the fact that there had been tornado warnings all day and after the first race the sky turned a threatening greenish black. Within minutes the sirens began blaring and over the load speaker came the command to take cover inside the grandstand.
We all followed the order and took shelter on the ground level of the building. There with a few hundred other gamblers we huddled in the center far away from any windows or doorways. The lights flickered and then the rain came pouring down as loud as I had ever heard it rain. The lights went out and the air conditioning stop blowing while the winds outside roared an ominous and mournful song. And it rained and rained and rained.
The storm lasted a good twenty minutes and eventually the lights came back on and the clamor of the storm abated. The management announced that the racing day was cancelled and informed all that the rain had flooded the parking lot. It took some time for us to reach the doorway and when we did we were greeted by a gentle lapping of water around our ankles as if we gone wading into a lake.
The ground floor of the Grandstand was built at an elevation of about 10 feet higher than the parking lot. Once we got outside we saw ahead of us people walking in water waist deep and in the case of the young neck high. My Father placed my brother Mark of his shoulders and my Mom, two sisters and myself slowly followed him as we got wetter and wetter and the water rose higher and higher until all of us were treading in three to four feet of newly fallen rain.
We eventually made our way to the Chevy and luckily for us we had parked in an area where the water had been able to drain away, although it was still bumper high. It was then that we noticed that my Mother who had been wearing a lovely crepe dress was now wearing a lovely crepe top with her slip covering her lower body. The dress had shrunk at least a eighteen inches and it’s hem now adorned her baby bump as if it were a bonnet. We all roared in laughter and secretly thanked God as we all realized that we had gotten through a very bad storm with only a damaged dress.
Now you might ask why I tell this story today. It comes to mind for two reasons, one the obvious, it was a Father’s Day memory that has stayed with me all these forty-five years later. And it serves to help me make my point that the important thing about Father’s Day is that whatever you do, you should try to create a day that will remain a memory. And for those of you lucky ones whose Dad collects Weller or Hull or Catalina Pottery a way to make Dad’s day memorable is to shop for a new treasure for him at The Long Beach Flea Market.
The second reason I tell this tale will help to bring some cohesion to the vases I have presented throughout my writing. You see the winner of the first race that stormy day was a horse named “Mellow Yellow” and as I look at the newly acquired vases that are available for sale I feel a sense of calm, the calm that the color yellow has always brought to me.
To see these terrific vases and many more beautiful items from all of your Dad’s favorite Pottery companies join us tomorrow, June 19th at the the Long Beach Antique & Collectible Market in Long Beach, California. The Long Beach Collectible & Antique Market is located in the Veteran’s Stadium Parking Lot from 7:00 AM until 2:00 PM. We are located in space # A 853. Click here for 10% off Admission Discount Coupon.
Happy Father’s Day to all Dad’s and here’s to making your Father’s Day a day to remember just as “Mellow Yellow” made one that I spent with my Dad.