Jun 15, 2008

A hectic, and happy Father’s Day

Dan Ferguson
Surrey North Delta Leader (Canada)
June 15, 2008

Scott Grant will be enjoying a wonderfully ordinary Father’s Day today, one free of court appearances and press coverage.

He will spend it with his two children, having a nice dinner at his sister’s place.

Like they often do, 14-year-old Max and 13-year-old Josephine will probably tease their single father about being both a mom and a dad to them.

“They’ll tell me how old old I look, how badly I dress,” he says.

He will laugh along with them.

And as he often does these days, he will think he is a truly fortunate man.

“If I never had any money, and only had my children, it would be okay,” the financial planner says.

“It’s a gift to raise children.”

Since he won a long and bitter court fight two years ago to get his children back from France, Grant has been living the hectic life of a single parent, juggling family responsibilities with his career.

The hours can be long when there are both clients who need to sort out their fiscal affairs and kids who need to get to school, when you are cooking meals and doing laundry (with the kids’ help) and making early morning runs to ice arenas.

He admits he gets a little sleep-deprived sometimes.

Grant is still digging out from a mountain of legal debts accumulated over the five years he fought to have his ex-wife Nathalie Gettliffe bring his children back from France after she fled the country with them in defiance of a court order.

In 2006 she was arrested during a visit to Vancouver and convicted of kidnapping her own children.

Shortly after her arrest French police returned Max and Josephine to their father.

Things were tense at first, but the kids have settled in.

They’ve completely regained the English language skills that had rusted away during their time in France.

They live in the rooms their father kept waiting for them.

Max has repainted his space orange, because he likes the colour.

Josephine has redecorated her room in more subtle shades of blue.

Max, much to his delight, is finally taller than his sister.

On the ice, the avid hockey player is a ferocious competitor, who once got his linemates sent to the penalty box because of a confrontation over a cheap shot by an opposing player.

All five players on the ice ended up in what Max began referring to as the “party box.”

Josephine is an honours student who appears to have inherited her father’s skill with numbers.

She likes going to school dances, but not in the same outfit twice, which is how her dad has become familiar with some local dress shops.

Josephine hopes to become a surgeon one day, while her brother would like to become a judge.

Money may be tight, and the legal squabbles are far from over, but none of that matters as much to this dad as getting to be with his children and watch them grow.

“It’s the best gift in the world,” Grant says.

“It’s worth everything.”

That’s really all he needs as a present this Father’s Day.



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