I played dominos once.

The game brings back a very special memory of my Granddad Andy being in the hospital after a fall.  It was dark, murky night in the midst of winter as I parked my car in the moonlight and went up in the lift leaving my stomach on ground floor as we ascended from the bowel of the building.  Entering the ward, I turned the corner and saw him sitting straight up in his bed, quietly looking out of the window as visitors began to mull around him.  The quiet man amongst the noise.  Our quiet man. 

He gave me the biggest smile as I sat down and asked me about my day, it was always about us and never about him.  Looking around me I saw the domino’s sitting and suggested a game remembering this was the pastime of choice at Dunniker Golf Club on a Friday night with his cronies.

Andy Young smiled at me and reached for the dominos.

My Granddad being the gentleman that he was let me win the first game then obviously deciding I had my chance…annihilated me in the next FIVE. 

I laughed and so did he as he would search the dominos, his soft blue eyes crinkling at the corners as he carefully choose one before placing it down with an impish but kind smile on his face. 

That’s how I remember him – a man of dignity, grace and kindness.  A few months later, he went to sleep and never woke up.  But I always remember that night and wonder about the timing.  The one night that week he didn’t have any other visitors, the dominos sitting on the hospital bedside table and the memory created years ago that I still smile at today.

And I was so lucky, so very, very lucky to know him and share his life with him. 

Looking back, I understand it’s all about the domino effect.  Every choice you make has a consequence, every opportunity yields the next and everyone you meet leads to another  and it is only in retrospect that you understand the reason and the rhyme of it all.  Cards dealt at the time dictated by fate. 

So, if I could leave with you with one parting wish, I would like it to be this; watch the dominos fall and see what fate has in store for you, you might be surprised by the delights that come your way.