I'm looking at these two home depot receipts. One is on July 14 and the other is July 15. Those are the last days I saw my father. He had some plants he wanted to hang so I bought two hanging planters and some decorator chains. My father was always a do-it-yourself guy. He had fashioned two clothes hangers into plant hangers. However they were kind of funky and out of balance. (He usually does higher quality work.) I suggested we make it easy and let me get what we need at the Home Depot at 3rd and 58th. Under normal circumstances he would have insisted on doing himself but he went with the flow.
We hung the plants and he meticulously made sure the chains were exactly the same length. He laughed with delight as to how much better it looked than the funky hangers.
He then asked me to frame and hang a picture of him and my mother together laughing. It was from about 10 years earlier when they visited us in Portland for Thanksgiving.
Before I left for the airport I put my hand on his shoulder and said "I wish we could have more time together." Even as I said it, I also heard it from a different perspective. As if "this was it." The "last time."
As I sit here literally two months to the day (9/15/09) since the last time I saw him, I realize that all things pass and there is a "last time." Who knows what mundane activity you might be engaged in with that person. One minute you're here, and the next minute... you're still here, but it won't always be that way! There comes a time when that's it.
So as I look back to our last time, I'm very happy that we had the simple enjoyment of that plant hanging moment together. And I share this with you with the hope that you make the most of every moment with the people you care about. I didn't know a Home Depot receipt could be so special.