Picture of the day - April 3, 2005
Today's photo features a very special decorative windmill. There is really
nothing special about the windmill itself - it doesn't serve a practical purpose
such as generating electricity, pumping water or any of the other typical uses
of a windmill. No, what makes this windmill special is what it represents....
You see, this old windmill belonged to my dad.
He was an inquisitive man, always reading
about whatever topic he happened to be interested in at the time, always
learning something new about science, nature, politics, you name it! If it was
covered in the World Book Encyclopedia, he probably knew something about
One of dad's favorite pastimes was experimenting with and building whirligigs of
all sorts. As a young child I would watch in amazement as he would take a pair
of scissors to an empty Prince Albert tobacco can and make a stove-top whirligig
that would spin around non-stop as the heat rose from the old wood stove.
But his favorite whirligig of all was the windmill. He built dozens of them over the
course of his lifetime - wood, metal, plastic... It didn't matter to dad. If it
could be cut, bent or molded into blades he would make a windmill out of it. At
most any point in time our yard and garden would have at least a couple of
decorative windmills betraying even the slightest breeze that happened to be
flowing across our property.
As the years began to take their toll on his health, dad got to the point where
he was unable to build windmills any longer. But he still loved watching those
spinning blades, placed into motion by the silent, invisible, yet obvious touch
of God's hand on the wind.
The decorative windmill featured in today's photo was installed on the front
lawn so that he could sit on the porch and watch the wind do its work. He spent
countless hours doing just that in the final years of his life. Up until the
very time that God decided it was time to bring him home, he never lost that
child-like fascination with whirligigs.
My dad passed away a few years ago, and now he is no doubt looking down on the
very winds that power the windmills. But his old decorative
windmill still stands on the front lawn today, an ever-present reminder of the
man we all loved and miss dearly.
My brother makes sure it remains in like-new condition. Every couple of years or
so he takes it apart, removes the rust and paints all the parts. Then he
carefully puts it back together and feeds it with a shot of grease. Not because
he shares dad's love of whirligigs... because he shares our love for dad.
In loving memory of Paul Rouse.
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