Dads and husbands don't always mix.
I'm lucky, mine get along really well.
From squinty-eyed distrust of the boy knocking on our door to an embrace of everything Mr W, my Dad has come full circle.
Dad is approaching his retirement and has been going a bit overboard trying to get ready for it. He's a machinist, and that means he's a tool junkie. To me, the smell of metal, oil, and heat, with a little Copenhagen or pipe tobacco thrown in, is the smell of my Dad. (He doesn't chew anymore. He gave it up when I had Nolan, something about "mijito...want to be around for mijito..." how cool is that?) You think it's hard to get a woman out of the shoe department, just try to get my Dad away from all things Craftsman. Impossible, but he finds tools to look at in Costco. Costco!
Anyway, he's on a bender about getting things done around the house, and setting up what he hopes will be his own little shop in the backyard. He has grand ideas about taking all the grandkids under his wing, and teaching them all about tools. He could use a little help with his projects, but is just awful about asking. He hints, he complains to my Mom, but he won't come out and ask Mr W.
Until last weekend, when Mr W got blindsided by my Dad into helping him in the yard and with a mailbox he was installing.
I was very sympathetic to Mr W as he was not expecting to help out. It took a couple of hours, and it was pretty hot, but he did it anyway.
I wonder, all these years, all the times I've heard "sure, I'll do it" whenever my Dad asks--is this the price; the unspoken, not-negotiable, undetermined price a man pays his father-in-law for the rights to his daughter?
It must be. My Dad can be a grouch, and Mr W takes him in stride...well, he rolls his eyes at me when my Dad's not looking, but for the most part, he's very good about it.
When I think about all the times I've seen Mr W lend a hand, I have to smile.
Guess I'm not such a cheap date afterall.