Daily Affirmation

The best things in life are free.
The second best are very expensive.
- Coco Chanel

Saturday, March 21, 2009

And Then the Dog Barfed...

Yesterday was one of those days you think about for awhile. I had taken the day off from work because I had some lab work I had to get done in the morning, and in the afternoon I was going to go to my Uncle Art's funeral service. I hadn't seen my Aunt Lucy and Uncle Art in way too many years, although they lived locally. Their kids (my cousins) all line up in age with my brothers and me, so we all went through school together starting - for me - in 6th grade. Fred was the cousin who was my age, and we landed in the same 6th grade class when I was just new to the area. We got teased unmercifully about being "Kissing Cousins" (remember - this was the 60's and kids were not all that clever or sophisticated...), but over the years we became good friends, and had lots of fun together. After high school we went our separate ways - me to BYU, him to USC and then USC med school. He's now a cardiologist in the LA area. I don't know how it happens that years go by without seeing people - especially when you're in the same family. You'd have to know my dad's family and the dynamics there (Lucy is his sister) - and even then I'm a little baffled by the disconnect. Whatever - it is what it is. My memories of Uncle Art are fuzzy, but fond. What that means is that I can't conjure up any specific memories, other than just a really good feeling when I think about him. I remember that I always liked being around him.
The service was beautiful - one of the nicest I've ever been to. My cousins took turns telling about their dad - funny, sweet things, all very poignant. Art was a good dad, and close to all of them. And Carrie's daughter sang - such a beautiful, sweet, clear voice. It brought tears to my eyes. I think Art was loving it - I know I would have if it were me. He has a lovely family.
There was a reception afterward, and we had a chance to visit with everyone. I'm so glad that I was able to reconnect with Fred after all these years. I am sadthat we hadn't been in contact for so long - I think I've really missed out on something nice. I was able to have a nice chat with Aunt Lucy, and I want to keep in closer touch this time around. That side of my family contains a lot of cousins that I don't know very well, and that's too bad. There was talk of a female cousins reunion later on, and I think I'd like to go to that. I never have before because I didn't know them well enough, but I won't let that stop me this time. I was also able to spend some time with Serena - one of my cousins from Utah - and that was a treat. She sat behind me during the service, and during the hymns she would sing in the most goegeous voice you can imagine. I want her to sit behind me in church all the time. We used to play together when we were kids, when we would go to Utah to visit my grandfather. It was wonderful to see her.
Along with the cousin reunion, I also saw a couple of people from high school that I literally haven't seen since 1971.
Again, great to visit and catch up. It always leaves me feeling bittersweet - that part of my life is so long ago and far away - but there are lots of good memories there to play with. So - I think the theme of the day is this: Stay Connected. Don't let another 15-20 years go by with no contact. Some of us could be dead, and that would be a shame.

Aaand next - on to Book Club and our stellar discussion of "Three Cups of Tea." I dashed home from the memorial, changed clothes, and ran over to Lana's. Most everyone was there already, and, luckily, everyone had read the book. The discussion was going pretty well when their little dog wandered in and just puked on the rug. Lana, unruffled, called her oldest daughter to come in and clean it up, as it was her dog. So there the barf sat for about 15 minutes before Oldest Daughter decided to come in and clean up. I couldn't concentrate on anything but the yuck that was about 6 inches away from me. Hey, I'm all for children having responsibility, but if my dog ralphed all over the carpet, you'd better believe I wouldn't be waiting 15 minutes for someone else to come clean it up. But that's just me.
Kind of a wierd end to a very different day. It's too bad that it took a death to bring everyone together again. But I have hope that we won't wait for such a solemn occasion again to pick up the phone and say hi. Life keeps us busy and occupied, but somehow we need to find the time to reach out to each other over the miles.


  1. I love the picture of that little dog! That's just how Mia looked after she scribbled on the wall and I told her it was naughty.

  2. You found me again! (No, I'm not stalking...just happen to be online and have just found your comment!) Anwyay, Karen, I'm glad you found me, through SSB and anywhere else!

    Cardamom is a *great* spice that most people don't use. It's in a lot of Indian dishes--might be a flavor you couldn't put your finger on--and I like to add it to sweet things, like gingerbread-pumpkin trifle and shakes.


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