Is there another word in the language that emotes more emotion? From yeah to oh hell!! The yeah being I’m headed to my favorite place with my favorite people. The oh hell being I’m going to something I’m dreading like a family holiday vacation from hell. I haven’t had a vacation in over a year and I have one planned that is truly a dream. As you know I have a Memphis family and we are all loading up and going to Acapulco. We have rented a house fully staffed and I can’t wait to sit by the pool and read, drink and eat myself silly.
You know I am blessed as a I have stated here numerous times. I can’t ever remember being on a vacation that truly sucked. I have taken many that might have involved a little work as well, but nothing that just sent me into a funk. I can remember my Father not ever wanting to go to my grandmother’s house. She was a plastic on the sofa, don’t go into the living room grandmother. Then you had my Granny. And yes, the difference in the names says it all. I loved my grandmother, but I really loved my Granny. My grandmother taught me how to act right. My Granny taught me how to have fun and love unconditionally, a lesson I treasure to this day. It has cost me large pieces of my heart, on occasion, but the feeling of joy when you do love, the way I was taught by her, is almost over whelming. She also taught me to love to cook, and the joy of living life. Now not to knock my grandmother she taught me things like manners and how to eat with silverware, a lesson I forget at times!
As I look back on my youth I spent my summer vacations with them both they lived about 2 miles apart an easy walk for a young man at the time. I would love to be with my Granny. She was a very small woman gray hair always in a bun, always working doing something. She lived a hard life. Buried 3 or her 5 children, didn’t have indoor plumbing until we ran it in 1972!! However, I never heard her complain about anything. From getting wood for the stove in winter to heat the house or feeding the animals to working in the garden. She was an angel on earth. I am so blessed to have lived near this special woman.
My grandmother lived with her second husband a man who taught me something’s as well, like how not to treat your wife. I can remember if he got mad at my grandmother he would just not speak to her for days. She would talk to him he would act like she was not even alive. I can remember how much this hurt her and how she would talk to my mother on the phone and ask her what she could do to. I swore then I would never do that to anyone I said I loved. I can remember the family eating at the table, when he was finished he would get up and turn off the light announcing dinner was over! So he taught me how to eat really quickly. I can remember when I was about 16 or 17 I got up and turned the light back on because my mother was not finished with her dinner. He told me he was the man of that house and I could leave if I didn’t like his rules. I didn’t go back to that house for over a year when he was there I would go see my grandmother for brief periods, whenever he was gone. When he got sick right before he died I when to see him, at my grandmothers request. He didn’t speak to me at first I sat there in the room with him and my grandmother silently until finally my grandmother told him he was being an ass I had come to see him and he was dying and it might be the last time I saw him. He looked at me and said thanks for coming and if he did die please watch after grandmother for him. It was the only time in my life I had ever heard the man be civil to my grandmother. I honored his request. When my grandmother died we were closer than we ever had been while my grandfather was alive.
So as I get ready to hit the road with my family I am blessed that there are only grannies on this trip. I love these people with all of my heart. Each one of them is special in a way different from the other. But together we make something so much bigger than the single members. I guess that is what a family should be. I think my granny would fit in perfectly with my Memphis family. They are all like her, people I love unconditionally and with all of my heart.
Well I’d better go pack my 2 swim suits and 20 bottles of wine! Granny might not like that part too much, but she would just laugh and tell me how I’m just like my dad. And there is no higher compliment than that, my friends.
The Blessed Man