We take a break from this usually upbeat and crafty blog to bring a more personal post about a man who was dear to my heart. You may have noticed a lull in posts this past week and a lot of that has to do with travel. I was in Chicago the frist part of the week (more on that soon) and then attending a memorial out of town for the last part of the week.
Growing up, I had this Great Uncle. His name was Uncle Bill. He was really more like a grandfather and we would often visit him over the summer. If you have been following along here for any length of time then you have seen me talk about him here and there. Going to his house always felt like some sort of magical and fun educational summer camp. You knew that you would leave and be just a little smarter for being there. He was constantly quizzing and making sure I was learning. There were many times I would answer the phone and it would be him and the first question out of his mouth would be, “What is the speed of light?” to which I would usually reply with, “Um.. not sure”
You better believe that by the end of the phone conversation I knew that the speed of light was 299,792,458 mps. Whew.
Here’s the thing. He not only encouraged learning, but he also inspired hope that YOU could learn and do just about anything you pleased. He was the first person to instill a love for technology. Uncle Bill was an Electrical Engineer who was always tinkering and coming up with fun and creative projects. There were many a science experiment created in his backyard and tons of stories told. Most importantly, he was one of the first people (aside from my parents) to encourage me to pursue careers or interests that were not “typical” to girls. He would often mail books on science as well as aviation (he was also a pilot). I’m pretty sure that my very first microscope came from Uncle Bill.
He drove like Dukes of Hazard and always remembered my love for strawberry ice cream. He could brighten your day with a string trick or two and wasn’t afraid to tell you like it was. Even just a few years back he decided that it would be a good idea for us to email each other once a week to check in and to do a little “trivia”. When he passed away a few weeks ago I scanned through my emails to see if I could find some of our conversations. I couldn’t find them, but remembered that we had left off talking about the significance of the platypus. Truly, always learning. “Dear SC (Smart Cookie),” he would start, “…let’s talk about…” and our conversations would go from here to there. My heart misses him dearly. We lost a good one.
Thank you for reading along and indulging me today. You guys are always so encouraging and inspiring. I just wanted to share a little piece of why I am who I am today. I would love to hear your stories of inspiring people!