IT'S BEEN 10 YEARS since I last shook my dad's hands. I'll raise a pint glass to him today.
I think of dad's hands every time I bash my finger with a hammer because he often nursed a black fingernail during the summer months. I feel his hands whenever I shake the hands of Uncle Brian in Sligo because big Brian has big hands like my father had. As a teenager, I thought dad's hands were incredibly tough, rougher than those of the office employee dads in our housing estate. Dad made things with his hands. He raised and lowered massive canopies of canvas with his hands. He could sense the viscosity of lubricants between the fingers on his hands.
And he knew how to celebrate with his hands (see photo), both while drinking and eating shrimp, olives and peanuts. Dad would love knowing that his grandkids like those things too.
Bernie Goldbach has a journal of lost thoughts.