#4--Letter to my grandson how I dropped a spider in his mom's lap in church
#6--Letter to my grandson about important days, including walking his mom down the aisle

#5--Letter to my grandson about big trucks, gravel boats and my Bay City home


My childhood home.
This is where I grew up in Bay City.  Just out the front door was the Saginaw River where all kinds of big and small boats passed.  Gravel boats unloaded right in front of our place.

Dear Xavier,

Sitting with my grandson.
At your house in Bosnia, we sit on the couch and work on the computer. 

I remember the day that we drove to Hungary with you and your mom and dad. 

You love trucks

On the way, we stopped to eat a snack and get a drink.  Alongside a busy highway, .Grandma Thorp held you, so you could watch the trucks and the buses whiz by.  Boy, did you get excited.  You would holler and point in excitement.  

You had the same reaction when we ate outdoors at a Sarajevo restaurant.  We were real close to a tram line in the old part of the city.  Every few minutes, they would roll by and you would squeal in delight.  

It's really clear that you love cars, trucks, trains, cranes and, basically, anything that moves and that has a motor.

My boyhood home

You would have loved the house I grew up in.  It was on the shores of the Saginaw River in Bay City, Michigan.  Right across the street was a business where ships would come in and unload gravel.  Cranes would load big dump trucks that would take the stones to all kinds of building projects.  This took place all day long.

If I stood on the front steps of our house and looked left as I faced the river, I would see the old Belinda Street Bridge.  It was old.  Really old.  To let boats go up the river, it's middle part, would swing around to create a big channel to let them through.  Quite often, I would stand on it as it swung open.  

The guy who operated that part of the bridge lived in a little house on top.  I thought then that he had to have the most exciting job in the world.

Every once in a while, a big boat would get stuck in the opening and the bridge couldn't move.  A tugboat would have to come and pull it through.  I would watch the tugs do their thing.

 Just up the river about a half mile was Defoe Shipbuilding Company.  When I was growing up, they built many guided missle destoryers for the U.S. Navy.  I would  watch with fascination as they moved up and down the river.

As a boy, I would sit on my small front porch and watched everything.  It was a small concrete throne where I created my own little world.

 As you get older, pay good attention to the world around you.  Take good mental notes and even write some down.  

 I love you,

Grandpa Thorp