A small watercolor tonight of the “auld sod”, otherwise known as Ireland. My Dad left Ireland in July of 1956, my Mother followed that October, after accepting my Dad’s invitation to move to Canada and marry him. Fifty seven years later Mom is gone, and my Dad is ready to move from the home they had together. It was a difficult decision for him, leaving the last place that he lived with her, but it is time for him to move somewhere more manageable. Fifty seven years later my Dad still sounds like he just arrived from Dublin last week. We grew up in Chicago, but I often joke that we might as well have grown up in Ireland, all of our parents friends were from there, any events we attended were with Irish people, music in our home was Irish…you get the idea. Dad has found a place to move to, there is a large Irish contingent living in this particular retirement home. He seems happy which is what is important, but he said something to me a few months ago that really stuck with me. He said that when he moved out his house he would be leaving his last home. The finality of that statement made me sad. I thought about what it must feel like to choose the last place you will live. In his heart he never left Ireland, and I am sure that there is a part of him that would love to move back there now, but the bigger part of his heart belongs to my Mom, and her grave is near his new place. He is certain about this move except for leaving her house, and in some way leaving her behind. We are all doing our part to reassure him that he is making the right decision. My contribution to that will be a painting for his new apartment. The painting tonight is the beautiful Irish coast, I will give him this one, but once I am back at home it will have to be an oil of Dublin. It will be hard on all of us to sell their home. Just as I am on this journey of discovery for myself, Dad will be starting the last leg of his own journey, and I want him to be happy.