Woo a 'blog!'. Never done a 'blog' before. Taken me ages to get round to this, sometimes time just disappears and before you know it, it's gone, gone completely and you wish you had actually got around to doing those things you said you were going to do!
This is about 'me dad'. Me dad, Graham Bennett, I guess just like most dads he was always around, sometimes in the background, mostly in the foreground. And like anybody you just assume they're always going to be there, even as you get older. But one day they're not there, that solid part of your life has changed, time has completely gone. 'Did he do all those things he wanted to do?'
I think as far as my dad was concerned, YES he probably did. Dad was an artist, an adventurer, a doer, he got on with his life. He travelled to ridiculous places, places most people wouldn't even think of going to, in transport most wouldn't even contemplate travelling in, although, don't get me wrong he travelled in luxury too! I can honestly say he's seen most of but not all of the world during his lifetime. He would take hundreds, thousands of photographs & produce amazing artwork depicting places and things he'd discovered whilst abroad and in this country. Always giving different things a go, challenging himself. Yes, if he wanted to go off in a dug out canoe in New Guinea, fly a small plane having never flown before, go surfing, travel in the most basic of trains across the Gobi Desert, India or the like of, drive a steam train, race an old tractor lawnmower round the villgae green, trek through various terrains whether jungles or deserts, visit penguins in the Antartic or see whales in the Arctic or simply see this beautiful country, take in the landscaps he so loved, he would. He loved being in company with different people from different walks of life, chatting, and boy he could talk, always interested in what they were doing, and always willing to help. Even after having a triple heart bypass he still continued to be a doer. He had passion, passion for life. So YES he probably did do the things he wanted to do, but I'm sure the was more he would've done...
However, his life changed dramatically when he was diagnosed with Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukaemia (CMML). Suddenly the that wanted to get on with living had to take a step back. He couldn't properly arrange anything as he needed to have regular blood transfusions every 3-4 weeks. His bone marrow had stopped making new blood cells. Sadly there was no other treatment that could be given to him. His energy levels were so low, although don't get me wrong when they were slightly higher he would still go out and do things, ok maybe not quite so adventerous, he may pop down to the local art gallery in Whitby where he had spent a lot of time over the year achiving, organsing and preserving paintings, and he'd continue doing the parish magazine. His witty banter would still be there, his enthusiasam for things would still come across, but life had changed for us all, particulary for him and my mum. when sadly he passed away on 27th January 2013, they changed even more.
I miss those things you just take for granted, his smile, his voice, his chatty ways, his humour, his eyebrows, the way he walked, his love for live and his love for us his family and friends, most of all I miss the huge hug he would gave that almost crushed me. I know I'll always have strong memories of him, which can never be taken away, and I would love to have one more hug that crushed you again.
Me dad's drive to do is in me, and time just goes so quick, so because of that I decided to do a big zipwire, the longest and fastest in Europe at Penryhn Quarry, Snowdonia, and in the process raise money for Leukeamia & Lymphoma Research...... which I did at the weekend, but that's another 'blog'