Saturday, October 11, 2008

Time Waits for No One

I have always liked that phrase. Time keeps going, and it will not stop for you. That's really hit home the last few months as some friends of my family have passed on, an old coworker died, and my grandparents have updated their will and "arrangements". The couple that passed on in a span of 6 months was like a 3rd set of grandparents, and oftentimes, they treated me more lovingly than my own. Bill died from complications from a serious stroke that had damaged his brain, and his wife, Jane, stopped kidney dialysis because she didn't want to go through it just to live each day. It was her choice. Her Bill was gone, her daughter was a succesful businesswoman, and her grandsons were grown up and married. That was her in a nutshell: tough and independent.

I went to visit them in Florida (retirement requires a move to FLA??) 5 years ago. They were as entertaining and tough as usual, but they said something to me that will always stick, "oh yeah, the first ten years of retirement, we did whatever we wanted, now we're waiting". Every morning, she cooked breakfast for me, and I'd get up at 7am to eat it with them. They'd tell me to sleep in, as their grandson did it, and I'd say "I'f you're cooking for me, I'm getting my ass up". I'd eat dinner with them and talk until 7pm (bedtime). Bill told me stories of serving in the US military attachment that was in China at the end of World War 2 and during their Civil War. We golfed 18 holes one morning (at 8am to beat the crowd), and even at 78, he walked the course with me. There are many memories of visiting them growing up I will keep and a steady one is Jane's spaghetti sauce. No matter when my family visited on a vacation, the last meal was her famous sauce. It was so good that when I visited in '03, The day after I had the spaghetti, I had some of the sauce only as a snack. My wife has the recipe now, so I guess some things never die.

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