I wanted you to know that you were beside me today, Dad. Right there beside me with your hands in the bike.
Today was bike day at Husky club and as the cast of wild things rode, I noticed that one of the older boys was sitting with his head hung. His bike was on the ground. I walked over.
"What up buddy?", I asked him.
He looked at his bike and then at me. Pointed. The chain had come off. It was hanging loose on one side and stuck on the other.
"Yeah," I said, tugging on it. "It's stuck
pretty good." Then I tugged it again.
"Don't bother," He said as he kicked the tire in frustration, "I've been messin' with it for 10 minutes. It's useless."
I looked down at the two freshly polished fingers that I used to tug on the chain.They were black. Then I saw your hands, Dad. I'd watched put the chains back on our bikes so many times that I could see you do it in my mind.
"You know," I told him, "I have two sisters and a brother and I saw my Dad fix this kind of stuff alot'," I knelt down beside him, "So is it okay if I try?"
The boy shook his head resigned and I moved in. I angled the bike against my leg the way you always did, Dad, and then I began to move the pedal back and forth and back and forth and guided the greasy chain back onto the teeth. I had to tug hard on it hard a couple of times, but I fixed it.
I stood up holding my hands in front of me. They were covered with oily black bike chain goop.
But the smile on the boy's face as he jumped on his bike made my hands look beautiful. "Thanks, Miss Pam!"
Thank you, Dad, I thought smiling as I walked inside to wash up. I had never put a chain back on a bike until today. But today my hands became yours. Efficient, dirty, and working in love.
I watched you and I learned something I didn't even know I'd learned. Thanks for always fixing our stuff, Dad. And know that I really loved having you at work with me today.
There's nothing like a Father's hands