In the off-season when we aren't meeting up at the local Aggie-owned spot to watch games, the officers host different get-togethers. On Saturday night, they reserved a room at Rudy's BBQ as a casual, come-and-go dinner spot.
We had every intention to get there when it started, but since babies tend to be so timely with their fits, we were dealing with an epic meltdown courtesy of Liam. By 6 p.m., I suggested we just get it to go. I couldn't imagine Liam actually letting us sit and eat in peace. Chris hesitated and we agreed that we would go with the back-up plan of shoving all of our food into a box to bring home if it comes down to it.
We dressed Liam in maroon and made it to the restaurant. As soon as we sat down with our food, we were greeted by an older couple in their 60's. (That's what I love about Aggies and Texans in general. No one is a stranger.)
The man took to Liam and Liam to him. As we chatted, he asked about my Aggie history. I told him my mom grew up in the College Station area while my grandfather, her father, received three degrees from the university and taught Chemistry while doing so.
"His name was William Langley," I said.
"Dr. Langley?" the man asked.
After further discussion of the years this man went to school and the years my grandfather taught classes, we discovered what can only be the spirit of the Aggie connection.
"I was in his freshman advanced chemistry class," the man said. "I tested into it, but on the first day he made us use calculus. I didn't know calculus!"
This man, 60-something-years-old, remembered my grandfather almost forty years post-graduation. As we say in Aggieland, "There's a spirit can ne'er be told..."
My G'Daddy was one of the kindest men I ever knew. Both of my grandfathers were, actually, which made all of us kids very, very lucky. He passed away in 1998 when I was just in 7th grade. He didn't get to see me or my sister attend the college he attended as a band member, student and professor, but I know he would have been overjoyed.
While I had always heard that my grandfather taught at the school I grew to love, I had never met someone who was a student of his. And to see my baby boy grip this man's finger as he shared stories of his yesterdays, I like to think my G'Daddy was sitting right there with us, meeting the great-grandson he never got to see.
I think there was something more to the nudge that got us out the door that evening. Something more to the calm that overtook Liam all of a sudden so that we could get out the door.
When I told my mom the story that evening, she said it was a wink from God and a hug from my G'Daddy.
I think so, too.