My Grandfather has just passed from this world. He was a great person, and immeasurably entertaining to talk to. He told me countless stories and we made some memories together. This is an attempt to cobble some of those recollections together before time fades it all away. It might not be terribly great to read.
his name is Isaac Lloyd Bucknum, though I will refer to him as "Grandpa" throughout. He was born in 1923 and lived most of his years on farms in Saskatchewan.
Grandpa spoke of his own Grandfather on numerous occasions, but the time that stuck out for me was when he spoke of him dying of of some kind of prostate problem (I assume it's cancer). His Grandfather was lying down and speaking to him and his brother Everett. He said "I wish I could see you boys grow up", and my Grandpa would describe the tears that flowed down his cheeks. I think it was the only time he saw his Grandfather cry.
He had a mention of his grandmother. He described her as a little ferocious woman. Once Grandpa was chopping the heads of chickens and his grandma said to him "That's not how you kill a chicken Lloyd." and then she would grab the chicken by the head and crank her arm around and around until the neck was well and truly broken. Grandpa would describe this with very expressive hand/arm motions. It was hilarious to watch him tell this story. He would laugh so hard, you couldn't help but laugh along.
Grandpa and Grandma used to visit my place often when I was a boy. I grew up an only child so I was often bored though I kept busy with lego and GIJoe. It was always great to have Grandma and Grandpa there because Grandpa would always play games with me, no matter what. He played Monopoly and Dire Straights and Payday and Canasta (two person) and countless other games. I would always play my music and he never muttered a word of complaint, though later in life I learned that he didn't really like my kind of tunes. I never knew. As a kid I was a terrible sport and he used to just chuckle and gently scold me. He was usually pretty good at calming down. No one else had the knack.
When I turned twenty I was introduced to the wonderful world of drink by my friend Neil. In May of 1996 we took a trip to the cabin at the lake, which my Grandparents owned, at Marean Lake Saskatchewan. We packed golf clubs and swimming trunks and were all very excited to go. What greeted us was a foot of fresh snow and a lake that was still frozen over and a cabin with no means of heating itself. It didn't even have a woodstove. My Grandpa must have thought we were nuts. That didn't stop him from staying up there with us. We had a big bonfire out back to keep ourselves warm, and we made big mounds out of the snow and stuck beer bottles in them (who needs a cooler). Grandpa wasn't a big drinker but he had a few that night with us and we all had fun stumbling around in the bushes finding the right tree to pee on. It was the the penultimate twenty year old silliness and he joined right in like we had shaved 52 years off his life. We told stories all night the three of us, and Neither Neil or I minded one bit because Grandpa was one of the guys. We loved having him up there.