Walking the plank with Grandpa

My grandfather on my dad’s side lived in the midwest, while I mostly grew up in Portland Oregon. My dad and I wanted to give him a surprise visit, so once we were in town we called him up. It was the first time as an Adult I was going to get time with him. I was really excited.

My only memories of him up to that point were of riding in his dump truck when I was about four years old. He stopped to get us slurpees from a 7-Eleven and would not let us drink them in the truck for fear that the straw would poke us in the back of the throat as the truck bounced down the bumpy roads.

Since it was unexpected, heregreted telling us he still had to work, thankfully that meant we just had to go to the bar he managed and hang with him there. So my dad and I were not disappointed. We met him there, I got my hugs and let him look me over as relatives like to do. He asked what I’d have to drink… well, I unashamedly enjoy fruity drinks. I had recently discovered one called “Walk the Plank” at a bachelor party I was at. Basically three kinds of rum, pineapple and orange juice. Or some similar variation.

I told him what I would like, he gave me a sideways glance, other patrons mumbled and chuckled. I got my drink and enjoyed it, then drank a couple beers. Eventually I had to use the restroom.

I asked my grandfather where the restroom was. He points toward the back and says “last one on the right.” I slowly walk back there, not realizing till later the whole bar got quiet. I arrive at what is the ladies room. I exclaimed loudly, “Mother F***er.” Immediately the whole bar erupts into laughter.

About a year later he passed away. He had beaten cancer several times previously, sticking around long enough that I could share that precious memory with him. That is something I will always be thankful for.

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