FATHERS: International Men Of Mystery



TANGENTIALLY RELATED: After the war, he returned to his office delighted he still had a job — indeed, owned the job — and eager to resume architecture. But it is good to remember that war can vex the spirit in subtle and unexpected ways. He sat at his drafting table, and did nothing. Not for days, not for weeks. There were plenty of commissions, and he had no pressure on him: his partner, who had run the business during the war, urged him not to worry. Of course it will take a while, Dick, he said. It did. My father soon left the firm he had founded. A couple of months later, my mother got a phone call from him in the middle of the day. He was standing on a subway platform, calling to say goodbye. Don’t! she said. Come home now. You need to rest. Just come and talk it over with me … He hung up. She sat in a chair and waited. Hours after my father made his farewell call, my mother, still rigid in her chair, heard his key in the lock. I don’t believe he ever spoke of how he spent that afternoon and evening, but he had come home for good. MORE

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