Tuesday, February 7, 2012

104 Years Old

About two weeks ago, my My Hunter Man’s grandfather celebrated his 104th birthday.  He is the 2nd oldest man in the state of Utah.  We think it is pretty awesome to be his grandchildren (I consider him my grandpa too, since mine have all passed away and I have been in the family for 28 years).  He is amazing and we love him very much.  My husband and my kids are all so lucky to have a grandpa and great grandpa who is still alive.   
Driving to his party was very interesting.  A few blocks from our house, we came to a railroad crossing that was lowering the arms just as we came to it.  But, no train was coming and no train came.  We waited and waited forever.  Well, it seemed like forever.  It was probably only about 10 minutes.  Finally, Hunter Man pulled forward as far as he could and then backed onto the shoulder lane.  He backed up and backed up past a long, long line of cars that had formed while we were sitting there.  Finally, he came to a clear spot and he made a U-Turn to go another way around the railroad tracks.  I’m sure a lot of other cars followed his example after that.  Traffic incident number one.
Driving north on the highway, we came to an intersection that has recently been re-vamped to prevent accidents.  Ha. Ha.  You can no longer make right hand turns on red lights because the previous lane to turn into is now a left-hand, continuous flow traffic lane.  Well, Hunter Man felt like he was in a hurry since we hand been delayed by the malfunctioning train signal so when we came to the red light, he started to turn right just like you can at almost every red light in the state.  Unfortunately, the left hand turn traffic in the lane he thought he was turning into was starting to commence.  Honking ensued!  He slammed on his brakes and reversed as fast as he could.  That was a little bit scary.  Traffic incident number two. 
When the light turned green, he put on the gas.  But, guess what?  He was still in Reverse!  He slammed on the brakes again and did not rear-end the front end of the car behind us!  I’m surprised that we didn’t hear a bunch of honking again!  This time I laughed.  I laughed and laughed and laughed.  Even he laughed.  Which I could tell was hurting his ego – having to actually laugh at himself, admitting that he really had made a mistake, or two!  Ty was probably silently laughing in the back seat.  He wouldn’t openly laugh and give us the satisfaction of knowing that he might be enjoying himself in our company.  We did drag him away from the X-Box to go to a party with old relatives that he says he doesn’t know or care about.  He does like Grandpa and thinks it is cool that he is so old, but doesn’t think it is cool enough to spend several hours of his day celebrating the fact.  Ty did say that maybe my husband should let me drive from that point on!  That was traffic incident number 3.
Soon, we came to a busy intersection.  Just as we got there, the traffic signal malfunctioned!  It started flashing on and off red for a 4-way stop.  But, then, just as it seemed like it was our turn to go, the signal would change back to solid red and then we didn’t know if was green for the opposite traffic.  I kept telling Hunter Man to just go when it was our turn, but he was hesitant since we could have gotten broadsided if that other signal was green.  Finally, he chanced it and we made it through alive!  We laughed again.  Traffic incident number 4 sure started to make it seem like some cosmic force in the universe did not want us to go to that party!
Telling stories
It was nice to see Grandpa on his birthday.  We enjoyed hearing him tell stories.   He loves to talk about his life.  He told about a time when he was a boy and he had a pony.  He was riding the pony with his brother one day when Indians came and stole his pony.  Can you imagine being alive when there would have actually been Indians stealing horses?  Wow.  He got on his brother’s horse and they rode back home.  He told his uncle what happened to his pony, then his uncle went into the house, got his gun, and rode away on his own horse.  He came back that night with Grandpa’s pony.  Grandpa said that his uncle never told him how he got the pony back. 
He talked about catching skunks and what they had to do to get the skunk smell out of their clothes and bodies.  His daughter interrupted and said, “Your mother made you bury your clothes, didn’t she?”
And he answered he as if he thought she was crazy to think that there was only one skunk incident in his life, “We got sprayed by skunks more than once and had to use tomato juice to get the smell out.”  He told about a time when they got to school after throwing a skunk into the river and the teacher made them go back home. 
He laughed as he told us that the teacher said, “We don’t want any skunk smell in this house!”  It was fun to hear Grandpa laugh at his own humor.
Our family with Grandpa (minus 3 of us)
He would have gone on and on, but someone decided that four stories were enough and told Grandpa that the ice cream was melting and so he would have to stop for now.  Some of us were not happy about that.  They could have put the ice cream in the freezer and Grandpa could have enjoyed his captive audience.
Our family with Hunter Man's mother, 2
 sisters, brothers-in-law, niece, and nephew.

His mind is as sharp as ever and he still has the greatest sense of humor.
He likes to set goals for his longevity.  He wants to be the oldest man in the state and then he wants someone to figure out if he is the oldest man in our worldwide church.  He is working toward 105 now.
Here’s to his next celebration!    

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