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May 8/First Quarter Moon
To all the mothers out there, your work is important.
My Grandma Glenna died last week. We had known her body was slowing down the weeks before I left and I feared that it would happen while I was gone. And so it has.
Grandma had always been a constant in my life. Her photos, which I just recently discovered, have been a new source of seeing through her eyes. The scenes she captured were familiar, of me and my sisters, of my children, of my wedding and lots of Christmases and grandchildren diaper changes. It has been so fun to renew that connection to her through the photos, her quiet ever-presence shown. She has been a model of how to live with love, within your means, close to and caring for the earth, while still having lots of experiences. She made it all around the world, even though she hardly believed it when you told her that these recent years in Assisted Living and Memory Care. “I did that?” She has been so important in my life and I will miss her forever bright, loving presence on this earth dearly. Here is a her obituary: https://www.mankatomortuary.com/obituary/glenna-loe
I arrived at Henry’s house from Amsterdam by train by way of Brussels. Here were my directions; take the Eurostar to St Pancras/King’s Cross from there down to the Underground to the Piccadilly Line towards Cockfosters, get off at Turnpike Lane, he lives on Willoughby Road. If that is not English, I don’t know what is. I am staying in the room of one of his flatmates while she is at home in Switzerland. Here is the view:
So many flowers here remind me of my grandmother. She loved flowers and while in Memory Care, that was our regular visit, we would go to the park and check out what was blooming.
So I see my grandmother in everything and every place. She is the rooted place from which my mother and I come. Somehow I am reminded of Grandma’s story of watching her mother run in her bare feet to chase the cow off the train tracks through their back yard. My grandmother laughed as she told it. Maybe she was laughing at the silliness of great grandmother’s bare feet and at her desperation to save the cow. I never fully understood the humor. It meant something different to me. I think of her barefoot and that connection to the earth and what that has provided and continues to provide. For me, the story contains so many symbols. The train is time and the journey of changes wrought (and I mean wrought) by the industrial revolution. Both their poverty shown by proximity to the train and their wealth by access to a cow. And somehow it all adds up to me here at my son’s house, a world away from home, barefoot in the backyard, hanging my laundry to dry, in the midst of big change.
The first quarter of the moon’s revolution is for letting your intentions come to roust in your life. And here in London I wanted to get to know the bus system and get to know the neighborhoods and boroughs of London. To that end I have been walking to work with Henry the past 3 days, a different route each day, and then taking the bus somewhere each time. First day the William Morris Museum, Second day the Victoria and Albert Museum, and the third, to the National Theatre. All in the hopes of finding places to write. It’s been so fun to grab a bus, climb up to the second level and view the world from above. Such names! They remain so jumbled in my mind, familiar but disconnected from the reality of what is there. Covent Garden, Piccadilly Circus, Wesminster, Carnaby Street, Hamstead Heath. And on and on.
For digital postcards of my travels in Amsterdam and Brussels, tune into my TikTok account: TikTok.firstname.lastname@example.org
Here is my King’s Day Postcard: https://email@example.com/video/7095126985344683307?is_from_webapp=1&sender_device=pc&web_id=7079138231459907115
More soon. Much love, Tina