Saturday, March 21, 2009

The day is long...


I have been thinking about my grandmother for the past few days. Songs have been coming on the iTunes radio station I listen to... and this afternoon, my cousin gave me a call. We talked for a long time. I enjoy his calls... easy rambling and lots of good laughs. It was nice to share memories of Gram with him.

I am the first grandchild. I have special memories of time spent with my grandmother. The Florida coast, Michigan, North Carolina... In 1967, I spent a lot of time with her. I was nine years old. She had just gone through a divorce, we were in transition from the military to a civilian life... it was easier for me to stay with her for a few weeks. It was the best time ever. We played Yahtzee and Scrabble, ate Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and watched Johnny Carson. She smoked like a chimney and enjoyed her Crown Royal in the evening. I still use one of her blue Crown Royal bags for the Scrabble tiles.

This photo was taken at Clark Lake, Michigan on June 24, 1950... 8 years before I was born. It's of my great-grandmother, Charlotte; my grandmother, Rachel; and and my great-aunt, Rhea. I can see my mom's face in all of them, and now I know where the chin comes from!

She called me in Paris on the Wednesday before she died. We had a nice long conversation, got to say a lot of things and gave each other our love when we hung up. I went off to the house in the country for the weekend. We had no phone and no one nearby to reach us. When we got home that Sunday night the answering machine was blinking like crazy... I was on a flight the next day.

At her service, I was in the car with my cousin and three of my brothers. A few songs came on the radio that will be forever etched in that moment. I miss you, Gram...

Hold on...

6 comments:

The Grillo said...

That was beautiful, Dianne. It must be so sweet to have such memories and to be able to hang on to them.

That was not something we ever quite managed in my family, and I envy you for it.

*HUGS*

Starman said...

I didn't know my grandparents well, but I do remember them as being very kind.

QBParis said...

Thanks guys, she was a special person in my life.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IPZzWYkdS6Y

MDTaz said...

When I saw the picture I thought for a moment it could be my grandmother. How distinct that era (and yes, how distinct those chins!). Your post took me back to when I first learned that each of my grandmother's had passed, and gave me pause to reflect a moment on their lives and the legacy of strength and spirit they've handed to me, and I'll hand on (if they'll take it) to my daughters. It's sad when they go, but then, they're never really gone - smiling on us in our cherished memories...

QBParis said...

Hi MD,

I keep looking at that photo myself. I had to dig it out of the brass trunk and scan it; it isn't framed, although it might be soon! :-)

I had some special times with my grandmother, I was the only 'girl' for 11 years, so we had shopping trips and "ladies lunches' together. She took me to Europe when I was 16.... she was very special. And very missed!

Thank you for your comment...

Starman said...

Bonnes Pâques.