1. He’s my dad. Little girls are supposed to think their dad’s walk on the clouds and can move the sun. I’m not a daddy’s girl; my parents have been nice enough to not play favorites with us when we were growing up – I should have the decency to do the same.
2. Even though he’s been telling me for years that he will meet the first man I bring home of the front porch, shirtless, wearing overalls, with a stray cowboy hat and a shotgun, he didn’t. When he did bring out the shotgun, it was only to take Ryosuke out to my Nonnie’s house and teach him how to shoot a gun – which Ryosuke loved.
3. He calls Ryosuke son.
4. Even if he wasn’t my dad, I would still want to be friends with him. Granted, that would be a little bit weirder, but he’s a pretty cool guy.
5. He can cook better than any restaurant I’ve ever been to. I grew up eating some absolutely delicious, ethnic dishes; everywhere I go people are always amazed how I can recognize Thai, Indian, Mexican, and African food just by their smell.
6. He taught me how to cook. Even though I complained about it all the time growing up (sorry dad), I am eternally grateful he taught me how to mince, how to taste test, how to play with recipes, and how to make a couple “simple” dishes. I’m living alone right now with no meal plan; I’ve never run out of fun things to cook.
7. His computer is filled with pictures of all three of his kids growing up. Looking through the pictures, you can tell how much he loves us.
8. He thought I was beautiful, even in my horrible and awkward teenage years.
9. He hasn’t put any embarrassing young pictures of me on Facebook. Believe me, he could. There is so much ammo on his computer.
10. He let me go to boarding school in Japan when I was 14. Not many fathers trust their daughters enough to send them away to live in a foreign country (not to mention a boarding school) – but he trusted me.
11. He helped me move into Hokkaido International School, my first boarding school. He flew all the way to Japan with me, helped me move in, and explored the city with me. His support was very encouraging.
12. He let me go to a two year, early entry program in Denton Texas (Texas Academy of Math and Science) right after that.
13. Halfway through the Texas Academy of Math and Science (TAMS) program, he told me if he could do it again, he wouldn’t let me go. When I went to that boarding school in Japan, it was supposed to be just for a year. Then I got accepted to TAMS, a two year high school. After that, I ended up applying to mostly out of state colleges.
It turns out the last time I would live with my parents was when I was 14 years old. That’s pretty hard for parents. But still, they let me do it because they love and trust me. It was what I wanted (and needed) to do.
14. He doesn’t make fun of me for speaking Japanese (family members, you know who you are).
15. He came to visit me in Japan. He even stayed in a capsule hotel, waiting until I got out of class to explore the city with me.
16. He was nice enough to wait until we were out of earshot to ask if the prostitutes in downtown Ueno (Tokyo) were “Women of the Night.”
17. Ryosuke’s father loves my dad. When they met, even though they didn’t share any common language, they were able to communicate through a mutual love for their children.
18. He will watch sappy Animated movies (like Monster’s Inc, Despicable Me, and Finding Nemo) and Japanese Anime movies (like Spirited Away, My Neighbor Totoro, and Castle in the Sky) with me. And he won’t make fun of the movies (very much).
19. He knows how to say ありがとう(Thank you) in Japanese. And he can count to ten. It took him a couple weeks to learn, but he’s trying.
20. He’s a traveler. I’ve spent my entire life traveling the globe; from an early age dad taught us all the importance of travel.
21. He taught me to never marry someone I can’t travel with. That rule has broken up several of my past relationships – and made me value Ryosuke so much more. Ryosuke is a great travel partner. Thank you dad for teaching me in the importance of a partner who travels.
22. He’s never threatened to kill Ryosuke. That’s very nice. I have friend’s fathers who haven’t been as forgiving or understanding. He was even happy (I think) when Ryosuke proposed.
23. He has the best tastes in hats.
24. He lets me wear his hats all the time.
25. He always wears the hat I bought him for Christmas a couple years back.
26. He reads my blog. All the time. Hey dad, if (when) you’re reading this, I love you.
27. He taught me the value of blogging. When I lived in Ghana, my parents started a blog. They were good at it – you should check them out here.
All of my teachers (and some friends) used to read their blog. Sometimes I would get embarrassed, since everyone knew everything about us. However, that taught me the valuable lesson of blogging. When I decided to start out and try my own blog, I tried to incorporate a lot of their ideas.
28. He never made fun of my failed attempt at a first blog (long before I started this one).
29. He sends me useful, thoughtful, and caring comments about my blog.
30. He always tells me I’m talented.
31. When I used to have panic attacks (before I met Ryosuke), I could call him up crying at 2am and it would be (mostly) ok.
32. He lets me skype with my sister’s dog Bo.
33. He always wrestles the dog. He loves Bo.
34. He (probably) didn’t eat my pet rabbit, Mr. Hopkins, when I was in college. The bunny (probably) really DID go to a nice farm far away where he could jump and play all day with other rabbits.
35. He let me raise rabbits when I was younger.
36. He taught us how to order chicks online, take care of them with a heating lamp, and raise the birds.
37. He taught us how to have a garden.
38. He taught me the difference of taste between home grown and store bought tomatoes.
39. He has an amazing singing voice. He totally kicks my butt at Japanese karaoke.
40. He can play the guitar like a professional musician (because, you know, he used to be one). Every time I hear an acoustic guitar, I go back to happy points in my childhood, when my dad would break out the guitar in the evening and jam out.
41. He taught Anna and I how to sing with him on the guitar.
42. He didn’t get mad when I nearly messed up his breaks learning to drive stick shift on his old, rusty maroon truck.
43. He didn’t get (too) mad when I accidentally wrecked my Auntie M’s garage with the car.
44. He taught me the importance of taking pictures all the time, everywhere I go, even if it annoys everyone else (sorry Ryosuke).
45. He gave me a milk allergy. Even though that kind of sucks (most of the time), I’ve been able to stay very skinny and healthy since I can’t, well, eat anything “good.” Chocolate, ice cream, cake, hormone-filled chocolate milk, cookies, whip cream, cream cheese, pizza, custard, and all the other delicious desert treats have milk in them. My milk allergy has kept me very skinny and healthy.
46. For as long as I can remember, my mom and dad have taken very good care of me when I get sick. They take me to the hospital and look after me all the time.
47. He always stuck up for me during my weird fashion phase. Even if I was wearing neon high socks, suspenders, and a dorky hat, he would still accompany me to Wal-Mart (because, hey, it’s Wal-Mart. It’s not like there’s a real dress code or anything).
48. He is by far the best preacher I’ve ever met.
49. Everyone who meets him loves him.
50. He taught me what a healthy relationship looks like. Mom and Dad are completely and totally in love. It was nice to grow up and watch that. They take turns cooking, cleaning, doing laundry, and “losing” the fights. Thanks to my parents, I know what “happy” looks like.
The Bucheles are always happy.
Happy Father’s Day, dad!
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