My sweet dad, you passed away 3 weeks ago. My heart is broken. I’m proud I was your daughter, you were my precious, fragile dad.
Two decades of Parkinson disease had made a strong dad a fragile man in the end.
As I held your hand one last time that night before you left us; as I caressed your face and your hair, I listened to you breathing while sleeping. You looked so serene.
You were my tutor in life. A man of flesh and blood, with your faults too. But with a good strong heart. As you loved that quote at the end of Some like it hot, “nobody’s perfect”.
Your love and passion for the 7th art has been your greatest teaching to me. You taught me who was Max Linder and Meliès: the early days of cinema. We watched La Belle et la Bête with Jean Moreau as the Beast. We laughed at Louis de Funès, Bourvil and Fernandel. Admired Marlène Dietrich, Greta Garbo and Kathrine Hepburn. You explained La Nouvelle Vague to me. How you enjoyed The Party with Peter Sellers. How I dreaded all the Western movies, but adored Singing in the Rain with you over and over again (cause you taped it on video). How i thought Fred Astaire was way better than Gene Kelly, and you defended Kelly by focussing on his love for emotion through dance rather Astaire’s technical choreography. How you were outraged our current generation has no clue to who is Bob Hope, Errol Flynn, Humphrey Bogart or Bette Davies. You were a fan of Quintin Tarantino, even when others of your generation would be in horror of his work.
I loved how the Halliwell’s Who’s Who in Movies was the bible in our home. How you regretted not being able to go to the cinema anymore. The last movie you saw in a theatre was Amadeus when it came out. You eagerly asked “did you see any good films lately?” when i came over to visit. I think you liked how I regularly go to the cinemateque (the film museum) and rediscovered the golden age and also obscurities of cinema. Even those last days at hospital, with your confused mind, you still asked that question to my boyfriend. You were still in there. You still knew somehow who we were, through our shared passion.
How can I ever forget you now? Every film is a reminder to you. Every new discovery on screen, I cannot share with you no more.
My sweet dad. A lot of tears flow over you, and I bet you think this to be silly, but the tears will stop I know. But missing you won’t.
I’m glad to share a passion with you that keeps your spirit alive.
Be in peace. I love you, always.