Yesterday after work I sat absentmindedly at a stoplight. My mind was suddenly distracted by the present. But not before I found myself thinking about my father “just out of the blue”. One sturdy hand outside the truck window caught my eye. I consciously realized my father thoughts were based on this stranger’s hand.
It was like my father’s. It moved like my father’s in a steady random movement of the fingertips. Like his hands moved prior to his illness. I looked at the features, a truck, a roofing company logo, longer but just as sturdy fingers. Yes, it was the movement that brought the memory. A random flicking of fingertips. Perhaps a recovered smoker, the flicking of an imaginary cigarette. Or perhaps the laborer worrying the leftover glue or paint. Or the older hand with numb spots . . .
A visual memory that reached across eleven years of absence to bring my father’s hands back into my life for a brief moment of comfort, security and the realization of how rich life has been.