Monday, August 25, 2008

90 Years young

Today is my Granny's 90th birthday. I sent her a card, chocolates, photos of her youngest grandchild. My family celebrated her milestone with a little birthday bash yesterday afternoon. I couldn't be there, but apparently it went well.

I called during the festivities yesterday and she was in fine form. She told me she has to use a walker and she is going a little deaf, but otherwise, she assures me she still has all her "faculties".

She called my husband by my brother-in-law's name; she told me my daughter would 'tell me all about the party', when she actually meant my mom - I think; (my daughter is a year-and-half and is here with me). I had to talk very loudly in order for her to hear plus the delay on the transatlantic call was terrible, and we kept talking over each other.

I was begining to despair of having a decent conversation. Then she scolded me for spending my money on the phone call and, just as I was defending myself, she scolded me for not visiting - she said I'd better hurry up because she couldn't promise she'd make it to her next birthday, in fact she went on to say she rather hoped she wouldn't. This made me smile. My gran is still the same: feisty and delighting in it.

A few things about my gran: She was born in 1918. She was married to my grandfather for just over 50 years. Her two kids gave her six grandchildren and she now has ten great grandchildren with one en route. She has yet to meet my daughter, her youngest great grandchild. She used to smoke like a chimney (she finally quit after angina set in); she drinks a whiskey and milk nightcap every evening before bed - and she has done this for as long as I can recall.

She worked most of her life, but she's never been anywhere near a computer, I don't think she's used a cell phone, she certainly doesn't own one. She doesn't drive anymore - to her chagrin. She had a rather unpredictable African Grey parrot for ever, and she is devoted to her Maltese poodles.

She has the smallest feet I've ever seen on an adult. My sister and I used to love to play dress up with her dozens of pairs of teetering high heels, but I wasn't even into my teens before I couldn't squeeze into them anymore.

She once got mightily upset with me because I told her she was heterosexual . . . She once had everyone baffled in a game of charades with her mime of the novel 'Wuthering Heights", she thought the title was 'Withering Heights", so she kept weaving around and'withering' herself away, while her audience looked on mystified. There's more to this story, but some things are best left as family business.

These days, she is physically frail: her knees hurt; her back aches; she's losing her hearing and her world has shrunk to the downstairs level of my aunt's home, but her feisty spirit is still strong, and I am so glad to hear it.

Happy birthday Granny, you are awesome!

1 comment:

Emily ~ Little Window Shoppe said...

What a neat story. I hope I live until 90! I think that there is so much to gain from life and I can only imagine all the great experiences she had. She reminds me of my Gram, she was feisty too. :)