You don’t expect me to dig that he said, His Father was pointing to the spade, hurry up. A plot had been marked out, he was being asked to dig a drain. Machinery can do that he sighed, shovel in hand, he found the spade easier to dig it, it cut through the soil easier, whatever. If he wanted to use the car, he had to dig the hole, so he saw it. Half an hour, a little progress, this is going to take an eternity, his fingers were not used to such work, they were beginning to blister, what would they be like by dinner time. He kept on checking his watch, mobile phones did not exist in those times. I could ring the landscape company ho thought, and hire one of those little machines. And his father would be off all the afternoon, he imagined the surprise on his father’s face, to see the job completed before the due time, think of the credits he’d earn.
Many years later, they gather for the anniversary celebration of his Fathers passing. He is there with his brothers and sisters, friends, they reminisces, tales are told. His wife is with him, their children too. He was always a teacher, Father, said his sister. He nods to his wife; she is after a bout of depression, she was in that state of loss for a few months, he wondered how they got through it all. Then he thought of his father, that hole in the ground, patience.