This morning I came across this sketch I did in 1987 or so of my father's hand. Timely, as he would have been 83 yesterday. (I opened a bottle of his wine in his honor.)
My father had beautiful hands, with long elegant fingers. I think he may have been a pianist in a previous life. That would help explain his passion for classical music, at least. Perhaps I was a pianist too — for the same reason. My mother always said that I have my father's hands, for my hands, too, are long and slender. A carpenter, handyman, woodsman, baker, gardener, jotter-downer-of-things, and of course a pathologist earning his paycheck with the deft manuevering of a scalpel and microscope, my father — like me — was happiest when his mind engaged with his hands.
I'm touched by this sketch, and how accurately I captured this hand. Even before reading the caption — "Dad's hand....waiting for bill after soup and salad bar at Main Street w/Hitzels," I recognized it instantly as the hand of my father.
My father wasn't an emotionally demonstrative man; he didn't hug or really touch people. But when he lay on his hospital bed dying of cancer three years ago, I held this hand between my own, and stroked and massaged the perrenial ache in his wrist.
"That feels nice" were among the last words he said.