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Once Upon a Time in New York

I just watched the old classic movie, Once Upon a Time in America directed by Sergio Leone. It brought me back to my childhood and some of the best times with my father.

My father is a controversial figure for me. He did some things that weren’t so nice, to put it politely, but this post is about the good things. I learned a lot about life from my dad. One of them was to live, to really live in the moment, and Saturday’s were the day to do that. He would give my mother a break and off we would go explore the world. We were like a little gang: my two brothers, sister, and I with my dad as the leader. My dad didn’t understand danger like a father should. He sought excitement and we children didn’t understand that some of the things he did could have put our lives in jeopardy. One of them was going on the New York City subway and riding in-between the cars. He had us stand there holding on for dear life as the train roared through the tunnel. We were so small we could have easily fallen to our deaths, but we just loved it.

He took us to the old black and white movie theaters. We would watch Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers dance or watch the old silent movies. There was no sound, just words and a piano player playing music just like in the 1920’s. We would walk through the streets of Manhattan, exploring thrift shops and unique stores. One time he bought me a tiny music box with a tiny ballerina. I loved to play it over and over again--watch her spin. New York was magical when we would have our Saturday’s. Sometimes I wish we could capture time and put it in a box. I look back with nostalgia on those days as a child. My dad is now gone. That time is now gone, but memories live on in our minds and in our hearts. Enjoy the moments.

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