A Little Sweet Bowling Vignette: So Old!

Ray Hemachandra and Nicholas Hemachandra

Me and Nicholas in Pisgah National Forest on Sunday.

I had a running commentary with a younger friend this past year about how very old I am.

But for much longer it has been a running commentary with my son, Nicholas.

Lifting up a box of books, back going out on our weekly hike, or just moving slowly on a weekday morning, I can say, “Poppa is so …” and my son, having heard the line so many times, heartily fills in the correct answer: “… old!”

“Yes,” I reply.

Tuesday night we had a staff meeting for work—for Altamont Environmental, where I am Director of Resources, part of the management team and overseeing Human Resources, Marketing, and Editorial/Quality Control—at the bowling alley Sky Lanes in Asheville, followed by Favilla’s pizza and, obviously, bowling. Nicholas joined us midway.

I had a good second game (223) and won the annual Altamont Environmental, Inc. bowling trophy. It turns out there is such a thing. Afterward, me and the person with the second highest score were, for whatever reason, talking about our advancing ages.


Trying for silly faces.

I called over Nicholas, so he could deliver his line.

“Nicholas,” I said, “Poppa is so …”

He was smiling ear to ear but didn’t say anything.

I repeated: “Nicholas, Poppa is so …”

“BEAUTIFUL!” he exclaimed happily.

I should have said, “Thank you!” But I was surprised and waiting for Nicholas to say what he always does, so I repeated again:

“Nicholas, Poppa is so …”

“What?” he replied.

“What do you usually say? Poppa is so …”

“AMAZING!” he said.

This time I thanked him. “Thank you, buddy. But you say ‘old.’ Poppa is so old.”

“Yes,” he said.

Ray Hemachandra and Nicholas Hemachandra

Succeeding at silly faces.

One thought on “A Little Sweet Bowling Vignette: So Old!

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