While I'm away, readers give the advice.
Lesson father learned as a child pays dividends with his son and grandsons:
My father was adopted at age 5, from an orphanage; family lore has it that his new father bought him a trike, then was upset and angry when my dad didn't immediately want to ride it, on their first day together.
Fast-forward 60 years. I am visiting my parents with my 10-month-old son. I am sitting on the porch, son Ted is under a nearby tree, absorbed in something as I watch. My father, also Ted, arrives home from work. On the way, he stopped at a yard sale and bought a used "corn-popper" toy. Senior Ted pulls out toy, demonstrates it a few times. Junior Ted watches, then continues what he had been doing: looking at the leaves above him. Senior Ted tries a few more times.
Then senior Ted sits down next to his grandson, and watches the leaves with him for a while.
Senior Ted has been dead for 15 years; junior Ted is 32. My dad was a very wise man, and my sons were very fortunate to have him as their grandfather.
On beauty and people's reactions to it:
My little sister was so beautiful that strangers stopped us to comment. One woman then looked at me and said, "This one has an interesting face."
At 80 years of age, I wonder if it impacted my life; I never forgot.