"I loved him and was proud of him. But you saw how I was raised and what I had for a father - I never learned how to show pride or affection," said the first man. "I feel bad about that now."
'I know," said the second man. "The way you were raised wasn't your fault. That was obvious when I married your sister." The second man (with skin turned leather from years working in the sun and fingers busted from so many missed hammer strikes) then got pensive - " I cared about you and I cared about your son - that's why I worked so hard to take care of your son/my nephew. Men of our generation didn't tell each other how we FELT. We just dealt with what we had to deal with....usually a day at work." He then leaned back in his chair and took a long draw on a Winston...."He's good people and I always enjoyed having him around. You'd be right proud of the man he grew up to be. Married a real good girl. She takes good care of him."
The first man looked off towards the horizon that I assume is always blue sky, puffy white clouds and where the sun is always rising. "It really wasn't fair - you had a boat and God knows he loves boats and water and fishing."
The second man laughed - "It's because I knew how to play AND work. All you worried about was work."
"I reckon," said the first man though the answer didn't make him all that comfortable. Even in the hereafter, he worries about who's making sure Atlanta streets aren't falling in on themselves and who is cutting the grass at houses he no longer owns.. Even here, he doesn't know how to completely relax. A restless soul is a restless soul wherever it resides.
"I think I've been looking for y'all." There was suddenly a third man in their midst. He was all manners, perfectly trimmed moustache and sideburns. "I think y'all must be Daddy and Uncle Ralph?"
"You found us..." said the second man (who we now know is Uncle Ralph.) "You're the one who took the biggest chance of all."
"How's that?" said the newcomer.
Uncle Ralph laughed "You had one child. And you let him marry that only child....a DAUGHTER!"
"Well," said the newcomer. "I told him early on that he was raised to have character. And now I'm sitting here with the folks that taught him character. My name is Charles...but I already know your names - Sam and Ralph. I've heard many stories."
They sat without saying a word for while.
Sam - the father - said "I'm just glad they let you drink coffee and chew tobacco up here"
Ralph - the Uncle - said "I'm just glad they let you drink coffee and smoke Winstons up here."
Charles - the father-in-law - said "I don't drink coffee and hate tobacco."
Ralph-"Well, there's somebody over there smoking pork shoulders and making sandwiches"
"I'll be right back..." said Charles.