|I know I’ve shared this photo before, but it is a good photo of my father, Gene.
I am a veteran garage sale, tag sale, and flea market shopper.
On Saturday mornings once a month during my high school years living in the town of
Shingle Springs, California
(one of the little towns that sprung up during the Gold Rush era),
my father and one of us kids would load up our old GMC van to take our trash to the El Dorado dump.
Afterwards, Dad would always take the helper to brunch somewhere in Placerville. It was a fun treat to help my father, quality alone-time, really!
Often, we would also swing by the flea market being held at Placerville’s Fair Grounds.
Years later, I realized where I get my love of flea markets
and decorating. Not really a where, more of a “whom”
My father was the adopted son of an Italian immigrant and his wife. He grew up in the Boston area back during the 1930’s.
During the Depression years, he worked as a shoeshine boy (his first job at 5 years old)
as a pin setter at a local bowling alley, and he cleaned up a bakery every Sunday afternoon.
One day he ate 18 leftover eclairs and became really sick… however that’s a story for another day!
Those early years taught Dad the value of hand-me-down goods, the value of hard work and dedication
to something greater than oneself.
He was a friend to everyone and taught us four kids
to love everyone. Racism wasn’t tolerated by him, by anyone. When my parents had parties where military friends were invited, both officers and enlisted were guests. One colonel didn’t like this and said so.
He was invited to leave, if he so chose.
You see Daddy had been both – enlisted in the 1950’s in the US Army, and later after collegeas an officer in the United States Air Force.
He served two back-to-back tours of Vietnam (1965-1966). He brought home a lovely silk dress for my mother, two rice-patty hats for us kids to make-believe with (I loved the beautiful, soft silk ties!),
and a few little trinkets and a Vietnamese bride and groom doll set that I still have,
lovely and faded…
His travels and ours touring America gave us a home rich with little jade flower table decorations,
carved balls of ivory, large and small wooden elephants,
The Three Sisters bronze statues and lots and lots of books – about everything!
My parents were voracious readers.
…and so am I.
Dad’s sense of style and design were my eyes and the true beginnings into that world of interior design
He couldn’t draw but he had a really good eye
for beautiful things to furnish the home.
Funny how the Atomic style of the 1950’s and what
we all call Transitional style with minimalistic decor and modern furniture is what I grew up with.
My design hero, my mentor, my esteemed father…
Love you and miss you, Daddy!
*updated Feb. 2019*
Happy Fathers’ Day,