A Letter to my Grandpa

By Julia Fernandes

June 29, 2011


They say genes skip generations. Maybe, that's why grandparents find their grandchildren so likeable. -- Joan McIntosh


Dear Grandpa,


I am Julia, your beloved daughter -- Moira’s youngest child. We have a chequered connection. I was born on 22nd May and just a few days later on 29th May you left for your Heavenly abode. When I came you left this world Grandpa. I never got to see you and you never got to see me. We missed each other!


Since then I have grown up on a staple diet of the stories Mom has shared with us about you and the days gone by. Mom often talks about you and the wonderful father that you have been. I know you were a soft-spoken and refined man never raising your voice or hands on all your four children (three sons and one daughter).


The closest glimpse I have ever got of what an ideal Father’s love and behaviour should be towards his children is through the experiences Mom has narrated about you. I listen with awe when Mom would describe how you would come home tired from work at noon and with your hands full of grease would snap your fingers and lovingly gesture to your hungry children, "Just two minutes ha." After a quick wash you would prepare a frugal meal for your kids and then rush back to work. For a father to come from work and prepare food willingly and happily for his children is remarkable.


I remember an incident from my school days. We were asked to write an essay about, "My Grandfather". I just closed my eyes and imagined if I had a Grandpa what would he be like and I wrote the essay. And to my surprise my essay was selected as the best essay, and my teacher was so impressed that she came up to me and congratulated me. She asked me how was I able to write so realistically. I just remained quiet. That day a girl who has never seen or known what a Grandfather is managed to pen the best essay in her class!


I know Mummy was a little prankster always inviting injuries. A smile escapes my lips when Mom recalls how you would lovingly attend to and take care of all her physical wounds not once reprimanding her. Today, when I see parents hitting their children for the mischief they do, I remember you and your patience!


Despite the hard times that fell on your family, you never grumbled or cribbed about your situation. You accepted with patience and fortitude everything that played out in your life. Well, Grandpa, Mom has the same grace and dignity that you possessed and the same values have been passed on to us.


I love music. I know you were an accomplished violinist even composing notes on the spot. Had you been alive, I would have definitely learnt to play the violin and played along with you and who knows we would have together churned out some fresh compositions.


I admire the way you held the family together with love. You were undoubtedly the best Dad any child could have and, am sure had you been alive you would have also been the best Grandpa. And, as a tribute to the wonderful values of the Rebello family, I also go by the name of Blossom Rebello (wink wink)!


Love you Grandpa…


Your loving granddaughter,



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