A man who no longer exists sweeps in front of a house that no longer exists, in a neighborhood which has changed so radically it is unrecognizable.
>This industrious man is my maternal grandfather, Mr. Joseph Galardi, and he was very proud of being a homeowner in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn. So he took the time to make sure all the leaves were put away and the sidewalk was clean as a whistle for people to walk on.
I don’t remember much about him except that he was fastidious. Mom tells me he was that to a fault. But I have to forgive him; he worked so hard and died so young. In fact, he usually had a cigarette hanging from him somewhere, and the little chips of tobacco were all over the place.
So, Grandpa, keep up that sweeping wherever you are. I’ll be careful not to mess up your hard work. My memories are happy, and I remember every crack in that sidewalk, and the wonderful, gritty shade we enjoyed when the trees were in leaf.