The Nail…

I grew up in a large house.  Each room was large and hard to heat.  One of the rooms was actually a double room.  Being raised with two other girls we called it the ballroom when we moved in.  Girls always think large rooms are perfect for balls, and princes and princesses.  Anyhow, this room had my father’s desk in it, my piano, a couch a couple of corner cupboards and was the room we played in and lived in for the most part.

Two weeks before Christmas when I was middle school aged, and after my Mom had passed away, my Dad came into the ballroom and hung a single nail onto the door that led to the basement.  After nailing it in, he wrapped his index finger around it and pulled on it.  My sisters and I were watching him through this whole process.  After checking the weight of the nail, he turned and said to us, “Yep, that will work.”  and then walked away.  We stood there and looked at the nail.  We thought he had really gone off the deep end at this point.

Daily, he would go to the nail.  He would do the same thing and announce to us that, yes, indeed, it would work.  We kept guessing what would go on the nail.  It was on a door that led to an area we did not venture into.  The basement was creepy and we only went there when we had to.  It was the room that was always in my nightmares for some reason.    So, to have a nail in the door that led to that part of the house puzzled us.

Christmas came and we went into the living room and celebrated Christmas.  It took a while to realize that we could find out what the nail was for.  After the gifts were opened we went into the ballroom.  There on the nail on the door was a dartboard.  Only a single father of three girls would think to give three hormonal girls a dartboard!  We loved it!  For the next several hours we stayed in the ballroom.  Dart piercings began to litter the door, the door jamb, the wall around the door and I think I even managed to hit the ceiling once or twice.

I haven’t thought about that nail in years.  In preparing for this series I was thinking of Christmases past and I remember the image of my Dad with his thumb draped around that nail.  He loved to create puzzles and had a dramatic flare for doing things.  He made us smile and frustrated us.

This is my Christmas memory today.  I have smiled at the thought of it, that nail, the fun I had with my sisters and the memory of my Dad.

Have a wonderful day.  DAF


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