The 40th Annual Chad & Dad Day At The Races!
Not a little tale to wag nor a dog to bark or even bite about. This tale is a tale of two stories about some really big doggies. My son, Chad, turned 41 on August 3rd. and my Birthday just happens to be August 8th. So from Chad's first birthday this has been an annual tradition filled with a lot of great family and friend fun and memories.
The photo to the right is my lovely soul mate, Janis, and youngest Grandson, Wyatt, just coming out of the famous tunnel that goes under the racetrack to the infield. Of course they had to
stop and pose.
One of my fondest memories was on Chad's first B-Day. We lived in Newport Beach, Cali then which was an hour's train ride from the Orange County whistle stop to the old downtown Del Mar whistle stop on the beach. We used to always take the train because it dropped you off within walking distance to the racetrack.
On this particular day one of my friends, Eddy, and his son Royce, Chad's age, Chad and I had to leave the track early in order to catch the train back home. I wanted to walk which meant walking across the trestles that the train tracks were on. This was easy to do as long as you knew the train schedule. But Eddy wanted to wait for the shuttle because it was getting down to the wire, time was of the essence and he wanted to make sure he got to the station on time.
L to R Colin, Bobby, Chad, Pops (me) and Bryan. All Chad's life long buddies joined us at the track yesterday to celebrate our birthdays and place a few wagers.
So Chad, fast asleep in my backpack, and I said our goodbyes and took off over the trestles. We got to the old Del Mar whistle stop and barely got on the train thinking that Eddy and Royce were probably already on the train waiting for us. I was prepared to see Eddy sitting there wit a big told ya so smirk on his face.
Big brother Chad and not so little brother Scott (Bubba) sharing a tender moment at the BBQ at Chad's home after the races. Although 4 years apart they have always been very close.
But much to my surprise I looked out the window and there was Eddy and Royce in his back pack standing on the wrong side of the train knowing that they would not be able to board. The shuttle didn't get to the whistle stop quick
enough to make it through the railroad crossing. So there Eddy, with a very long face, and Royce stood waving good bye to us as they watched the train leave the station.
Albeit Bubba is a very talented general contractor in his own right his real mastery is a gourmet chef. No wonder his brother was giving him such a warm hug. He proceeded to prepare a yummy feast for 40.
They had to wait 3 hours for the next Amtrak and Eddy didn't have enough diapers. Our journey over the trestles was a bit chancier but we were already home and Chad was comfortably tucked in for the night when I finally heard from Eddy.
But don't think for a moment he was brutally sequestered away in a hot kitchen. He was the hit of the party and believe it or not Chad's view in the distance is, you guessed it, the Del Mar Racetrack. Hmm. Something eternally strange about this I think.
So every year since then, and I do mean every year, Chad and Dad along with family and friends still spend a day at the races. In fact a few years ago Janis and I joined his family for an educational experience through Normandie, France during our birthday's and we actually had to spend a day at the races in Deauville. It was indeed an experience. It rained cats and dogs and everyone was drenched to the bones in early August but it was indeed one of the best racetrack experiences yet.
Janis and I love and embrace our family traditions and have been so fortunate to have had the lifelong blessings of fun experiences with our family of 3 Daughters, two Sons who blessedus with 7 Grandsons and 7 beautiful Grandaughters.