Thursday, September 03, 2015

A Kid in Edmonds, Wash.: I Play With the Grandkids and They See Me as Just Another Kid.

Is that a gorgeous looking young couple at right or what? Are they professional models? They are not.

They are our daughter Misha and her husband Ed on vacation at Redondo Beach, California. Barbara and I were at their home in Edmonds, Washington visiting for a month and watching our four grandchildren while they went away for a few days.

I know what you're thinking. Four kids? They look like they're 22 or 23. How could these two kids have four kids? 

Well, they do. The oldest is Mia at 13. The youngest is Talula, at three. In between are Bella, 12 and Max, 8.

I'm not going to tell you how old their mom and dad are because I want to live. But Misha and Ed are NOT kids. Ed is a senior vice president at LA Fitness responsible for dozens of clubs. Misha is an incredibly talented party designer and planner with a popular website,  A Lovely Design.

Why do Misha and Ed look so young? Over the last several months, Ed has dramatically changed his diet and followed a rigorous exercise program, losing about 45 pounds. Misha has also lost weight, but did not have as much to lose as Ed.

"You think you look good?" I said to Ed. "Wait till you see me this time next year."

He doesn't seem worried.

Misha and Ed are both fully grown up, serious adults, as is my good wife Barbara. Me? I go through the motions of being an adult. Been there. Done that.

At my age -- a number I have trouble wrapping my mind around -- and stage of life, having gone through the entire normal life cycle of career (teaching and publishing as a writer and editor), parenthood and doing all that must be done to build a successful life, I regularly and happily act like a child.

The four kids consider me one of them, though Mia at 13 who often watches her three younger siblings, is not sure of what to think of an old man acting like a child. But sometimes I get a laugh from her and that is good enough for me.

Now photos from our month in Edmonds, of my second childhood and of the remarkable lives of grandkids --  filled with art, music, dance and living the creative life to the fullest.

Above is a scene from the musical Shrek at the outdoor Forest Theater in which Mia, Bella and Max had dancing and singing roles. Mia is in the back at dead center, Bella is far left and front, and Max is the little guy in the far right behind Shrek. 

Mia, right, belting out a song in Shrek
Bella, left, dancing it up in Shrek

Misha prepares the star of the play, Jason Gingold, for his role as Shrek.

The star of Shrek with his designer. Misha designed and sewed most of the costumes.

One day my fellow kids saw me crying. They asked what was wrong. "I'm tired of being bald," I said. "I want some hair."

They swung into action, below.  Mia, right, did my eyes and eyebrows. Then she and Bella, left, gave me a new head of hair.

The new me. What an improvement!
I was so excited with my new hair that I broke into a dance. It was caught on video  by Mia's friend, Darian, right. (The video is the first on the list at right, IMG--2033.MOV)

It's not enough that the kids sing and dance with top-level theater groups like Kitsap Forest Theater. In between these professional-level performances, they put on impromptu shows -- you're not going to believe this -- in the garage.

They even included me in their act, sitting there as an old fool. Max gave me a new head of hair and a top hat. It was a great impromptu performance, with the exception of my role in the audience. I wish we had gotten the garage play on video. Oh well, maybe next time.

Besides singing and dancing, Max is always drawing something. He did a portrait of me, which he holds up below. I told him I loved it and would have it framed and keep it always.

"It's going to be worth a fortune some day," I said to Max.

No fool, Max gave me a look that said, "yeah, sure."

I'll be back home Sept. 11. I'll try my best to be a grown-up adult, but I know it's going to be hard.

So long and keep moving.

P.S. It's been nearly three months since my left hip replacement.  Yesterday I went out and hit for the first time here at the tennis club in Edmonds.  Though I took it easy, not running, I felt great.  I'll be back playing in a matter of days.  Yes!

NOTE:  My latest novel is Something Tells Her.  Go to Amazon. 

Jane is abandoned at birth and then placed in ever-changing, uncaring,  and often abusive foster homes. At age 12, her latest foster father makes a sexual advance on her and, with something telling her this is not right, she runs out the door. On the street, alone, no family, nobody, not even a last name, how is she going to survive? 

Other E-Books by George Pollock

"State Kid: Hero of Literacy" is fiction based on his real-life experiences growing up in foster homes; "Last Laughs," is the true story of how five foster kids (he and four younger siblings) found their way in life and each other. "Killers: Surprises in a Maximum Security Prison," is the story of his being locked up for 23 hours with killers in a maximum security prison; "I, Cadaver" is about his postmortem adventures and mischief in the anatomy lab at UMass Medical School. “A Beautiful Story” demonstrates the art and process of creative writing as a 16-year-old boy goes all out to write a story that literally saves his life.