Today I was out and about. I traveled around the county to do some shopping. First the bookstore where I wanted to purchase a book wasn’t open yet. Then off to my second stop and they didn’t have what I wanted but I did pick up a small grater. The one I am using now, a Mouli grater, belonged to my parents and is becoming dull and more difficult to use. But while in the store I received a call from my daughter, Julie, about picking up a pair of socks for Zena who had cold feet. That was my next stop, an outdoor craft show where they were. My daughter-in-law is soooo crafty and her oldest girl is following in her footsteps. She made earrings for the show. From there I stopped at Magnolia Grange. The museum house was open to the public today for tours. The house was decked out for Christmas and Santa was there as well waving and greeting visitors from the second floor balcony. There were vendors there as well and I am fond of music boxes and she had repaired and decked out a couple of very cute ones. I treated myself to one.
Thanksgiving turned out to be a beautiful day and, of course, spending the afternoon with family is a big plus. There were eight of us but we spaced out somewhat. There was plenty of food and conversation. The boys are growing up so quickly but they sure are picky eaters. I will say it was a great respite from the talk of pandemic and politics. As usual, I didn’t take any photos.
Although my mother-in-law left us in March of this infamous year, 2020, she appears in odd moments. I’ve been weeding through piles of files and saved articles to be read at a later date. It was on this occasion that I found a newspaper article dated January 9, 2013, in the Village News. On the front page there is a photograph of Mom doing her thing, volunteer work at the Shepherd’s Center of Chesterfield. She was 88 at the time. She continued volunteering for two more years.
Genealogist, Thomas MacEntee, sent out an email with this headline. It brought back quite a memory for me. On Nov. 9, 1965, my best friend (and she still is), Gerry and I headed to Manhattan to the art museum. I had a paper to do for art class. The trip from our home in Far Rockaway to the museum was an almost two hour subway train ride. We did OK getting there but half way home, the power went out. It was rush hour. The train was packed. Even if you fainted you would not have hit the floor that is how crowded the train was. It was standing room only.
So, we’re in the dark, on a crowded train, no idea what happened. Finally after five hours or so, they finally led us off the train onto the tracks and into a community we were totally unfamiliar with at 10pm. Fortunately, someone who we had never met from Far Rockaway made it to a telephone booth (remember those?) and called home and made arrangements for someone to pick her up. She offered us a ride. That’s what we were doing when the lights went out.
Recently, I began recalling proverbs that I learned as a child in school. They were a mainstay in our education; something we had to memorize. Then today as I went through a pile of saved stuff from years ago, I came across a page from a magazine with many of those proverbs. Do you remember “A penny saved is a penny earned,” “Neither a lender or a borrower be,” or “All that glitters is not gold”? The appropriate one for me at this time is, “Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today.”
As we all know, this has been a strange year. Since the pandemic and quarantine began and everything shut down, my enthusiasm for most things has evaporated. Hopefully, now that my knee replacement surgery is behind me, I will begin writing again.
September 1 Dad would be celebrating his 113th birthday. He was born in New York to Vincenzo and Angela Nardelli Grassi in 1907. He was the oldest of five children, Paul, Tess, Connie, and Nick. Brother, Paul, died when he was 12 and that was a traumatic event in the family. Joe enlisted into the Army on March 28, 1941 for the duration of WWII and was stationed at Ft. Benning, Georgia, when he met Helen Kirksey. They were married in Washington DC on November 19, 1942. He was overseas for the duration of the war and returned home in January 1946. He was always easy going and held various jobs which included waiter, bar tender, short order cook, and luncheonette owner. The last was an opportunity he couldn’t pass up. He enjoyed working with people. During the Depression, he sold pineapple juice on the beach. It’s really important to share stories with members of the family because each person has part of a story. We don’t all remember a story the same way. My brother recalls discussing my Dad’s nickname with an old friend of the family and he said that because he looked like a Greek he was known as Joe Pineappolis. One day there was a knock of our door and a gentleman asked for Joe Pineapple. That was how Dad was known then, Joe Pineapple or perhaps it was Pineappolis.
Meetings are scheduled but they are generally not in person. I’ve only attended one in-person meeting since February, an annual meeting, which included a short tour of the sheriff’s museum. There were only 18 people in attendance. The running comment is, “Who is that masked person?” The other meetings, regular membership meetings and board meetings, are done online. At least we can keep in touch with friends to provide moral support and/or conduct an organization’s business.
There have been suggestions to document our lives during this pandemic and quarantine. This has been difficult. But as I watch the news or read articles, it breaks my heart to see so many businesses close. Many stores were already in trouble before the pandemic. People have taken to buying stuff online and the quarantine has reinforced the new idea. Technology sure has taken off as people are working from home and conducting meetings. I do not order that much on line. Some of my friends have taken that route – they order everything. I still like to look at merchandise and see what is being featured.
About ordering on line. I have always enjoyed looking through catalogs. Sometimes that is the only place you might find that unusual gift or item. Just think, if Sears or Penneys had converted their wonderful catalogs to online shopping, they could have been huge.
I still like browsing and today I saw a decorative plate that says, “Without Music, Life Would Be Flat.” The note reminded me of my music teacher Miss Abrams from long ago who said, “Always B Sharp; Never B Flat.” Great words to live by.
Who would have thought something like this would happen in 2020.
It began raining last evening and since last evening we’ve had over 5″ inches and it is raining cats and dogs right now. This may continue until tomorrow. The weather forecasters are calling for more hurricane type weather this year – that season begins in late August.
We’re wearing our masks here too. Before we leave the house, our new habit is to be sure we have our mask with us. I should have kept better track of the plagues we have had this year.
My ancestors lived here long time ago, perhaps not in this county but nearby. The homes here that are here are amazing. Families come in multiples to share a house and enjoy the seaside. It’s fun to watch the families sitting under the umbrellas playing and digging in the sand and the families fishing. The Bada Bing Italian ice cart came by and, of course, you have to have just one. The relentless but rhythmic pounding of the waves on the shore is soothing.