Friday, 27 July 2012

sometimes, voyaging means saying goodbye from afar

written by Rick

I remember this time, when I was a little kid, maybe nine, we went over to my Grandma's place on a weekend afternoon. My local aunts and uncles were there, along with their kids. 

My Grandma always made really good muffins and chocolate chip cookies. My Aunt Kandy would make these marble mazes out of Lego, and bring them to my Dad to figure out. The muffins were always cut in half, and piled on a plate. There was a friendly competition for who would get the muffin tops. There were rules of etiquette to be adhered to. If someone was bold enough to reach for a muffin top, when there was a muffin bottom higher on the pile, there were several self-appointed referees who would see it and and cry foul. 

That kind of thing is common with big families. My Dad is the oldest of six kids. 

This particular day, everyone was sitting out on the deck, around a plate of chocolate chip cookies. The grown-ups were drinking coffee. In those days, kids only drank in the kitchen, because they were expected to spill. 

Suddenly, Grandma says, "Roddy!", my Dad's youngest brother. Everyone had seen it. There was a sense of group outrage. My Uncle Roddy had picked up two chocolate chip cookies off the plate at once. 

"But Douglas did it too!" he sputtered in response, sounding more like a little kid, than the grown-up he was. The tattle-taling did nothing to dispel Grandma's outrage, or win over the sympathy of the group. 

Uncle Roddy sulked contritely while Grandma expressed her views on the situation. He continued to sulk while all the aunts and uncles debriefed the incident. No one gave my Dad any grief over taking two cookies at a time, after all, he didn't get caught. 

Just an amusing little family memory. 

My Grandma died yesterday. She was 92. She was one of the most feisty and lively old ladies I have ever been around. She was active and healthy her whole life. And then she was gone. 

I don't think she would have suited a lingering illness-style departure. It is sad to see her go. 


  1. Loved your story, and we are feeling for you. Your grandma sounds like an amazing woman.

  2. So sorry for the loss of your grandmother! I'm glad she didn't suffer, and hopefully you've inherited her good genes!

  3. It sounds like she was a fantastic lady. We're so very sorry for your loss, Rick. Take care...
    -Nicole and Aaron

  4. Sorry to hear that Rick! Glad you have such fond memories!

  5. Thanks all for your kind words!

    She was a great lady, and we certainly didn't see enough of her. She clambered aboard our boat just before we left Canada, to check things out for herself; grabbing my arm, she said: "All these dreams you to have, makes me want to be young again!"



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