Today is my Pappap’s birthday. He passed away in 1996 and while I miss the HELL out of him every single day, I did eventually reach a point where I was able to stop crying about it at a pin drop and actually enjoy the memories I have.
I acquired a shit ton of photos from whenever we were cleaning out my grandparents house in 2016. I still haven’t hone through everything but I like to rummage through the boxes every now and then. I decided to do that tonight to get some photos of him to post on here and I ended up pulling out a stack from one of our vacations in 1990. I was so wrecked-looking for a long time as a kid and these pictures of me are awfully cringey but it’s time for me to stop caring about that because – well, who cares!
I’m glad this is the stack I drew because I have been thinking a lot lately as we plan our family trip for next summer about how my Pappap (and Aunt Sharon, also featured prominently in the upcoming photos) instilled a strong love of travel into my life. I think he would be happy to know that Chooch is here now and is exactly the same way. I think my Pappap would have been wild about Chooch, honestly.
Anyway, please enjoy this random collection of my brace-faced, knotty-maned, chubby-cheeked adolescent self; my Pappap and Sharon’s disdain for posing for the camera; and a lot of European locations, some that I can’t exactly pinpoint all these years later – sorry!
Get ready for some signature Sharon scowls…
On this trip, we did London, parts of France, Italy, Switzerland, and Germany, I believe. Maybe Amsterdam, too. I would have to consult my old vacation journals and they are in a large trunk which is a pain to open. So we’ll just have to pretend that my memory is tight.
To this day, when I think of the Spanish Steps, I think of the fanciest McD’s I’ve ever visited. I wonder if it’s still there/as nice?!
I look like I’m crying but this was one of my favorite places when I was a kid, except that there were GIANT spiderwebs inside that bridge and that always scared me. I hope that I can go to Switzerland with Chooch (and Henry, I guess, lol) one day!
I guess Sharon must have taken this picture; I love it a lot.
That green was a choice.
I mean, I hate that I’m about to say this, but Shron really should have smiled more. She was so pretty. Also, seeing those coach buses in the background have me stoked for our summer 2023 trip that better fucking happen because we’ve already paid for some of it and I fucking swear to god there better not be another lockdown. It will be our first time as a family traveling with a group and I’m so excited because I love group tours!!
My pappap was probably ranting about how we had to pay for each pat of butter.
My grandma was a difficult person to travel with.
We’re probably walking off yet another ear-beating from my grandma here in Venice.
I wonder what he was talking about! That one lady is like, “NO FUCKING WAY, YA GOTTA BE SHITTIN’ ME!” in response to whatever tale had him gesticulating like so. You know how kids are always like SO BORED to be sitting with a bunch of adults at a dinner table? I was the opposite – I fucking loved sitting with my pappap because he always had interesting things to say, he always ended up being one of the most popular people on all of our trips, and I felt like A FUCKING GROWN-UP sitting there drinking my hot chocolate (which was usually disgusting Ovaltine in these hotel restaurants) with my plump pinky finger extended.
Anyway, I’m glad I never burned these pictures in a hobo fire of shame and I think it’s time that some more of these old shots see the light of day. I was lucky to have had the opportunity to make these memories, even though they weren’t always as idyllic as you’d think. At the end of the day, it was time spent with my pappap and I will always treasure, today especially. Happy birthday, Pappap!!
If you’re reading this, would you like to see more vintage photo dumps like this? LET ME KNOW IN THE COMMENTS. Lol.