On a Sunday afternoon, 1986, summer time in Brooklyn, N.Y. my father and I were headed to Sunset Park to enjoy a little piece of Mother Nature away from tall buildings, subway trains, honking horns and crowded streets. I remember feeling excited and anxious on the way to the park; I was anticipating a wonderful day. What could go wrong? Little did I know what I would experience later on that day.
Looking up to my father as he drove to the park, I observed him quietly. My father’s stare was penetrating and focused. I always felt safe and secure when I was with him. Who would believe that this man with broad shoulders and such a strong physique and character could cuddle so gently like a fluffy teddy bear? My father had recently given me a skateboard which I had decided to take along with me to our trip to the park. This big, black chunk of wood with four blue wheels had captured my interest. Luckily, I was strong enough to carry it and skate on it. I was finally going to get my opportunity to ride my skateboard sooner than I expected. My father had parked the car not far from the park entrance.
My father walked as I skated cheerfully along his side around the park. “What a wonderful day,” I had thought to myself. I had spoken too soon. We heard a loud roaring thunder followed by an assembly of clouds and gusts of winds with different shaded leaves wrapped around each breeze. Raindrops were trickling down onto our heads, changing their pace into a downpour. Tree branches could be heard cracking and breaking as the flashes of lightning could be seen by the shadows of the trees as it struck. To our surprise, a storm was settling in upon us. I immediately became frightened, and looked over to my father as if asking for reassurance. “Don’t worry. Everything is ok,” he said. We picked up a slight jog as we were running towards my father’s car. The thunder had startled me to the point I could hear my own heart beat, every step as I ran. We were drenched by...