Like a duckling imprinted on its parent, the image of my father is imprinted in the deepest part of me. I calculated that between the ages of 3 and 8, I saw him two months out of the year, and altogether that makes twelve months. Thereafter, I saw him every other weekend and parts of holidays, until I was 12 – who knows what that amounts to. There was of course my first year of life, until my parents separated, and that one visit to the south of France. That makes three years so far.
At 12, I went to live with him and struggled through my adolescence in his home, with his new wife. I left for college at 17 and never returned. That makes eight years altogether. He died when I was 36, halfway around the planet Earth.