Not many know but this Dec 4th was two years since my father in law passed. A man who I admired for many reason. He lived most of his life from a wheelchair but that never held him back in the least bit. From opening and running several businesses and always making time for family no matter what. He loved the holiday and family much more which why I’ve chosen to do this post today.
The past few months have been a constant reminder of how we all miss him but have decided to try and make a difference in our lives or the lives of others. As I previously posted this year the wife and I decided to create a tradition, one to honor his memory and let his spirit for the holidays live on. We’ve gone and bought two bikes and created a Facebook page called “Jingle Bikes for Kids”. The purpose for this page was to encourage those to take the time and consider donating a bike to “Toys for Tots” or any other charitable organization. After all the holidays are about the kids and who didn’t love waking up to find a new bike under the tree? He did love the holidays and all the joy it brought the kids.
On Friday Nov 30th 2012 the wife (who belongs to Yelp Elite) got an invitation to go attend a VIP party at Busch Garden’s (Christmas Town) an event that after going we knew it’s almost like it was designed for her father. The lit trees everywhere, Christmas carolers, sing-along train and many attractions are things he would have total enjoyed. Coincidence or Fate?
Prior to going to Busch Garden we had extra time before the event so we chose to eat prior to going. Right next door to Busch Gardens is Mel’s Hot Dogs yet another place my father-in-law loved so we ended up eating there. This was actually the first time I had been there but I knew of the place. From the minute I walked in I knew why my father-in-law loved the place. See he was a huge Coca-Cola fan and the colors in Mel’s reflected that, not to mention the food is awesome. So after eating we made our way to Busch Gardens and proceeded to enter. Walking thru the entire time I kept thinking “If he were still here this is where he would have wanted to come for the holidays”. As we continued thru we came upon a row of what appeared to be small cottages which sold everything from Christmas ornaments to delicious holiday treats. The wife and I stopped at one to get a hot cup of cocoa and a cookie. While we sat there in soaked in the sights and sounds I couldn’t help but think of my father-in-law. I could totally see him sitting there in his wheelchair sipping a hot cocoa and eating a cookie while carrying on a conversation with Mrs. Claus. Yes….. Mrs. Claus was there walking around taking pictures with people, signing autographs and greeting all the little ones (who all were smiling from ear to ear). Continuing on we stumbled across a huge Coca-Cola sign there and once again we thought of him. He was an avid Coca-Cola collector and it showed. If it was Coca-Cola related he either had it at one time or still did. Walking thru the park we next stumbled upon the sing along train. We boarded the train which took us around the park at night. The train lit with lights and played Christmas music for all to sing along with. I sat back and watched as kids as young as five to people in their eighties all smiling and singing along. After getting off the train we walked back to the front of the park enjoying once again all the holiday sights and sounds. As we were leaving I couldn’t help but think of my father-in-law as the whole experience start to finish was something he would have enjoyed. Also throughout the night we saw many things that made us think of him and helped us remember why many people loved and admired him. So as my wife and I drove home discussing the events of the evening and how strange it was we couldn’t help but wonder. Was the entire evening fate or purely coincidence?
Have you ever had a time where you felt like fate was the driving force in an event? Or do you feel as if it were pure coincidence?