Memories of My Grandmother

Today my grandmother turned 96. I emailed my aunt to wish her a good day. I can just picture my grandmother sitting at the table asking my aunt to “turn on the box” to read it (referring to the computer), or “turn on the little box” (laptop) if she is in bed. She likes to read my emails, even when she doesn’t understand what I am saying.No, I don’t write in English, but I do so many things that she just doesn’t have any concept of, it all sounds very strange. She has never driven a car, and even though she has been in them she can’t wrap her head around the distances I drive each day simply to get to and from work mainly because she has never lived outside a large metropolitan area where you walk everywhere, and driving is reserved for special excursions to the country side or the beach (4 hour drive from where they are). Grocery stores are still a new concept for her, as opposed to specialty shops for everything (bakery, diary market, butcher shop, farmer’s market). When I write to her telling her how my week has been, or what I have been up to, it is not so much that she doesn’t understand (she has an idea of *what* these things are), but she doesn’t understand, which is also a result of her progressing years, where certain things just aren’t clear anymore.

I remember when I was little my dad and I used to write her letters. They would be long, spanning several days, in the style of journals, and once they became thick enough we would mail them out. It would take at least a month for a letter to reach my aunt and grandparents, and vice versa. It still does actually. Which is why I hardly ever send them cards, and just use email for all communication (this wasn’t always an option).

I ordered some books from Romania for my mother for Christmas in early November. I am still waiting. This summer I learned to order things early. When my dad was in the hospital with almost nothing to do, I wanted to get him some of his favorite books, ordered them in Romanian on Amazon knowing they would take slightly longer, but had no real idea of the delay that still existed via actual mail. They arrived too late.

At this rate I would have had to send out my grandmother’s birthday card to her back in October. Which, come to think of it, was how we used to do it.

Considering I lived with my grandparents and aunt for my first years (until about five and half), I have dozens of memories and stories about my grandmother. Sometimes when I remember them I write them down, almost afraid I will one day forget. When my children get older I will tell them some of the stories. Sadly I don’t think my children will ever meet my grandmother.

Here are two pictures I found in an old album a few months ago… the first is with my grandparents and my dad (and obviously me)… the second was taken a few years earlier (not entirely sure when).

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