I love my parents. My father is intelligent, calm and collected. My mother is smart, kind, and tenacious. Both of them are very loving. In the Finnish way. They are also encouraging in the Finnish way.
Sage advice from my father while golfing yesterday:
"Hitting the ball is quite essential in golf."
"You should not hit the ball into the woods. They are harder to locate there."
"You should have aimed less towards the left than I told you to. Then it would have gone straight."
"You should try to see where the ball lands, then it will be easier to find."
"You should yell FORE! when you hit the ball towards me."
"You should avoid hitting people with the ball... or with the club."
"Sometimes it is hard to get out of a bunker, just keep hitting out the sand. Maybe the ball will come out with it."
Upon returning from successfully completing my fourth round of 18 holes, my mother finally concedes:
A child of a global world, originally from the land of Santa and cell phones, married to a bona fide viking, and attempting to raise a loud little life who has Down syndrome, all the while getting used to the US Pacific Northwest after many years in Latin America and Africa. Against all odds the kid's first words turned out to be 'mom' and 'book' instead of 'fuck' and 'no'. That may well turn out to have been my finest parenting moment ever.