The night of January 25, I committed myself to starting a new blog; a place to share the things that have inspired me and the things I’ve chosen to dedicate my life’s work to. An early morning phonecall gave this new start added pertinence. My dear grandmother Sally had passed away in the night. After ninety years, the majority through which she demonstrated fierce independence, I am pleased that Grandma is now at peace, and has pulled up a seat at the big bridge table in the sky. I dedicate this blog to her memory.
After the surge of tears, the dull body-ache of grief and heartache, I’m left now with a deep gratitude for the role my grandma played in my life, particularly in my childhood. I will forever cherish memories of playing cards and chinese checkers with her, taking bus rides to town and drawing happily in her loungeroom… the same lounge room in which I now sit, writing. I will remember her fantastic Spanish Cream desserts and spongecakes (those that rose, and those that didn’t) and the occasional spoiling with a serve of sugar-coated strawberries.
An international citizen, my grandmother was Trinidadian, Canadian, English and finally Australian, and consistently fed my imagination with stories of life in Trinidad complete with pet monkey, Tuki. She managed to raise two intelligent and sensitive sons as a single parent in a time when to be one was frowned upon, and that only gives me further cause for admiration.
As the years wore on, dementia, a stroke and the mounting of years slowed grandma down… but she always retained a twinkle in her eye, and was just as capable of surprising us with a witty wise-crack as the rest of my family. Rest in peace, Grandma… I love you.