Dave and my boys love going to minor league baseball games. We have a few local teams here where we live, in fact Drew has been a bat boy for The Newark Bears for the last few summers and loves it!! Dave and the boys try to catch as many minor league games as they can in the summers and I join them as often as my job allows. It is a great way to get in lots of baseball without the major league prices! This year, we started off the “2013 Summer Tour” with a game at the Scranton-Wilkes Barre Rail-Riders while we were in Pennsylvania.
Dave’s dad lives in Scranton. It has been several years since we have seen him. We are in touch via Facebook, but don’t get a chance to catch up very often. We sent him a message letting him know that we would be in the area and if that if he were around, perhaps he would want to meet up at the game. It has been so long since the kids had seen him, he did not think that the kids would recognize him! We have seen him in photos on Facebook, so Dave and I were prepared…he has grown a full beard and it is white. He said, “you’ll recognize me as the guy who looks like Tim Allen in The Santa Claus movies”. He did!! Drew said that he did not remember what he looked like, and when we thought back, the last time Drew saw him, he was probably only six or seven, so that made sense.
We got to the game about half an hour before it started and he was already there. He was waiting for us by our seats. I almost walked right by him! Even with the photos, I did not recognize him right away. He has lived in Pennsylvania for over twenty years now, and we have probably only gotten together, (either there or in New Jersey), a handful of times.
Growing up, Dave had a very different relationship with his parents than I did with mine. Whereas my family did EVERYTHING together, (and often to an extreme), Dave’s was quite the opposite. There was a lot of alone time, and I think Dave grew to like that. I think it took him a long time to get used to the way my family “worked”. He didn’t get the idea of nightly family dinners and could not believe that a typical family gathering for us, was never less than 25 people. My parents and I rarely go a day without talking, whether it is on the phone or in person. My mom and I used to talk a few times a day. This again, has always been quite different with Dave’s family. We have gone months without seeing or talking to his mom, and it has been even longer with his dad.
So today, was really nice. A last minute plan, when we realized that we were going to be so close to where he lives. A quick message on Facebook, led to a really nice afternoon catching up at a ball game. Dave’s dad is not a baseball fan at all, yet he still took the time to come out and see us. That meant a lot to all of us and now that we realize how close it actually is to the Pocono house, maybe this will lead to us meeting more often.