Outside in the sunshine I squint.
I think of Grandpa Gallery when I squint. He would watch me play when I was a kid, and he’d squint looking omnipotent. He'd set his right hand on the seat when he drove. His muscular hand was used to shifting, but the new Plymouth had push button transmission, so he laid his hand on the seat between us and drove with his left hand.
When I handle tools I think of my mom’s father. Grandpa Frank Gallery tinkered in his basement or out in his garage--building wooden toys or working on cars. Even though his fingers seemed big, his dexterity was impressive. Grandpa fit those hands into the depths of an engine to tighten a hard to reach bolt like he was tieing my shoelace or lighting his pipe.
My hands are beginning to look like Grandpa Gallery’s--rough and stained with ink.
I wrote that in 1992. Francis A. Gallery lived from 1903 -1988. We dedicated Gallery Nuttshell to his memory. He was a very good mechanic, that worked for the same company for 58 years and he also made little wooden toys for his grandkids. I have one and my sister has several more (they still work 50+ years later!) Most important Mr. Gallery showed me how to be a real man. Sensitive, caring, yet not a doormat and tough (he was an amateur boxer).
Wish you were still here grandpa, but I'm so grateful to have had you in my life!