Posts Tagged ‘memories’

Facebook has a “memory” feature. It notifies you with this message, “You have memories with “so and so ” to look back on today.” There is an “On This Day” tab on your Facebook home page.

Not sure how they choose the random postings or the years.

But yesterday’s memory included one from six years ago. An exchange between co-workers.

Work friends are interesting. You’re thrown together in what sometimes feels like a totally random roll of the dice. Quite a bowl of soup. End up spending so much time with them that many end up occupying a special place in your heart. I do a pretty good job (pat on back) of keeping up with some of my old co-workers but I have to give a shout out to Facebook for making that a bit easier to do.

I consider many of these folks to be cherished and dear friends. Those shared hours and many experiences built lifelong connections.

Here is yesterday’s memory.

Bob C. to Mary

December 14th, 2011

“Mary, I was looking at some of the pictures you have posted and I have one question. Are you ever going to look older than you did when we worked together?”

Chris B. “liked” this comment.

Mary to Bob C.

December 14th, 2011

“Dang, Bob, can you say BEST BOSS EVA??? It was a near tie between you and Brian R. but you just forged ahead and won! You are very sweet but keep in mind photos can be very deceiving!”

Brian R. to Mary

December 14th, 2011

“Well, Mary, apparently C. (he called Bob by his surname) has learned to be a suck up as he got older, while I’ve become more of a curmudgeon!  

Why would I share this with you? Definitely not for any additional banter. I certainly look older than I did when I worked with Bob, Brian and Chris.

But because things change in six years. Shoot, things change in six minutes.

Bob passed away of a heart attack on May 29, 2016. Chris would die from cancer six months later on November 17th, 2016.

Brian is still, thankfully, alive and kicking. And not the curmudgeon he makes himself out to be.

A boss of mine in Dallas just died this past week. And I’ve lost other work friends over the years.

A Facebook notification like this causes one to pause for a moment. To take a trip down memory lane. It also makes a person consider what they write, text and post. What it reflects. And the lasting legacy of those words. It reminds us of just how fleeting life can be.

On this day I wish you all a season of fond memories. Of those who are no longer here and of those who continue to be a special part of our lives. I wish you wonderful words.

 

 

 

 

 

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I met with a friend yesterday. We were chatting about this and that. Traveling was one of the topics. Specifically about airports.

Jenny mentioned a line from the movie, “Love, Actually” which claims that the Arrival Gate at the airport is the happiest place to be.

Yes, that’s so true.

Even though an arrival gate can be quite chaotic.

Go through the doors and there’s a mess of humanity staring you directly in the face. Before they quickly dismiss you as not being their person.They continue searching for their loved one. Holding signs. Flowers.

Anxiously waiting.

Then the cries of joy. The smiles and laughter. The hugs.

It’s overwhelming when it’s face to face-on the same floor level. For the ones coming out of the gate. Especially if you are a shorty like me! Desperately looking for their own loved one in the sea of bodies.

What I always liked about the small airport in my home state is that you had to ride down the escalator to the waiting crowd. It allowed a bird’s eye view, while descending, to scan the masses and seek out your own people.

Also allowed them to look up and find you gliding down slowly.

And I would see my parents. Standing together and smiling when they saw us.

Would nudge my kids, “Hey, there they are! There’s Nana and Papa!”

Although they would have already spotted them on their own.

I went home last summer and then again for Christmas and it was different.

My father would never again be waiting at the Arrival Gate for me.

So, we passed through the excited crowds, collected our baggage and hopped into a taxi.

The Arrival Gate is a happy place. Love everywhere.

But not always. Sometimes it’s a memory of love everywhere.

And those memories are truly cherished.

 

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Once you go Mac you never go back.

Or do you?

What happens if your Mac goes kaput? Like mine did. Nothing. Not a light. Not a whir. Not a gasp.

Well, I gasped. Possibly shed a tear.

I wasn’t expecting a Mac to die.

Here’s the thing.

I didn’t want the laptop in the first place. I am not first in line when it comes to new technology. That would be my husband. I’m about four years behind him.

If I didn’t get the iPhone finally shoved down my throat I would still be happily using the flip phone. You’d get a phone call from me and not a text.

Now, I text and the only phone calls I make (where I actually have to speak to someone besides my Mom) or receive are wrong numbers, the unbearable conversations with repairmen which end up with me enunciating very clearly and the odd call from the school.

In this case the iPhone is a blessing. Laptop gone and phone to the rescue. I can do most things on it. But it’s not the same.

So I went and found the old laptop. The beloved one that put up with my hammering away on it for years. So much so that the letter “S” is non existent. Faded away because of me and my writing.

As an aside, “S” is very popular. I am not a yes girl but I am most definitely an “S” girl. Hangman, crossword puzzles and Scrabble. “S” always comes in handy. As in SOS! What would happen if you got a distress call “O”??

Anyway, back to the ThinkPad. I fired that baby up and was back in business.Except this bad boy literally heats up like nobody’s business. Could end up with third degree burns on your lap if not careful. I could rename it “lap-top layer of skin.”

Took getting used to again. I was trying to use my finger tips to move things around the screen to no avail. Kept deleting things. And getting frustrated.

Now here is the very cool thing.

When I opened up the laptop I discovered a file titled “Papa.” It contained photos and four videos that I hadn’t seen in a few years. Forgot they existed. They were sent to me by one of my cousins. Taken at my father’s surprise party when he turned eighty.

It was me, at my cousin’s Irish Social Club, giving the speeches in honor of my Dad. Was a great day.

I came up with a game “How well do you know Pat Lennon?” followed with fun facts.

Then poked fun at him for his phrases in my growing up years. About how he never pronounced “th” only the “t” Like how my kids would ask the gas price (on purpose to hear his answer) and he would reply, “Tree-tirty-tree a gallon.”

I told him my memories of him would last a lifetime.

And then I thanked him. Not just for creating me and acknowledging that I was his best work ever. LOL. But I also told him I was grateful he was my Dad and that I was always aware I was one of the lucky ones.

At the end of the speech I told him I loved him.

You know what?

I was absolutely right that day.

My memories of him will last a lifetime.

And I was reminded of this by my Mac biting the dust and me having to figure out something else.

My Nana used to say, “Light from another window.”

One could also say that one door closes and another opens.

Sometimes that’s hard to believe.

But sometimes it is so true. Even if we don’t know it at the time.

 

 

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I had a recent conversation with my husband. About bikes that we owned when we were first married. Nearly thirty years ago.

We discussed the make and where we bought them.

I then asked, “Sure, but did we use them?” LOL

He said, “Yes, we did!!!! We even rode them down the boulevard to your Nana’s house. You don’t remember???”

I said, “No, I don’t remember.” And I didn’t.

He replied, “Really? She was soooo happy to see us.”

I was thrilled that he had that memory. But it really bothers me that I don’t. It was my grandmother! I know it happened. My Nana was always on our radar. But I just don’t remember this occasion.

It saddens me.

But I guess it’s really good to have a partner. In time.

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This past July I was back in Rhode Island visiting. Of course, I did my usual haunting of cemeteries. I had been wanting to see the monument for John Gordon. John was an immigrant and the last person executed in the state of Rhode Island in 1845. He was Irish and Catholic when it wasn’t a great time to be either. Gordon was secretly buried by his fellow Irishmen in an unmarked grave at St. Mary’s Cemetery in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Took a long time but thanks to a Rhode Island politician Rep. Peter Martin and many others he was not only posthumously pardoned for the crime but there was a Mass and dedication of a beautiful monument.

If you are interested in the John Gordon case you can read this past posting of mine.

https://justbeingmary.wordpress.com/2011/10/04/john-gordon/

So I headed over to the cemetery behind St. Mary’s Church to pay my respects.

John Gordon Memorial

John Gordon Memorial

Gordon Memorial

While there I had a good look around the area. Because it once was a place I knew very well. There was the church where my grandfather made his living and where my parents married. The school that my mom and her siblings attended is across the road. Up for sale. The convent by the side of the school is no longer a home for nuns.

I searched the big empty lot where once a huge three storied mansard style house loomed. A house that I visited every weekend because it was where my grandparents lived. It was owned by the parish and the first floor also served as a cafeteria for the St. Mary’s school kids.

A lot of my wonderful childhood memories were created in that two block area. I remember us following my grandfather around in his workshop at the church. He was always whistling and the change in his pants pocket jingled along with his key ring.

It was sad to see empty lots, desperate buildings for sale and things just not as kempt as they once were. Where there is now cracked pavement littered with bits of glass there once was a long sloped driveway that we eagerly scampered up to get to the big heavy door. It seems like yesterday.

This house was a jumble of rooms for kids like us to get lost. Nothing was off limits. Poppy’s desk so we could trace his ashtrays on paper. The extra room where we played dress up with their clothes. A huge laundry room and storage where we explored and hid. And the long hallways where we ran, picked up speed and slid down them in our stockinged feet.

It was the best of times.

Was the sad story of an Irishman that brought me to St. Mary’s that day. But it was the cherished memories of two other Irish immigrants that I loved so very much that made me want to stay. Nana and Poppy, I miss you still.

St. Mary’s Church-Pawtucket, Rhode Island

St. Mary’s-My Grandfather’s workplace

St. Mary’s School. Convent to the right. My grandparents’ home once stood across from the convent to the right.

St. Mary’s School-Pawtucket, Rhode Island

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