I am older now. My 28th birthday came and went last week. I celebrated with friends, flowers, wine, and oysters. It’s good to be a little older and hopefully wiser, saner, and stabler.

The other milestone that occurred last week was that, had he still been alive, it would have been my Grampi’s 100th birthday. My Grampi, my father’s father, died when I was 11. He was my favourite grandparent. I celebrated his birthday quietly and thoughtfully, and reflected on the following facts:

  • Many of the characteristics that I am proud of in myself come from him: sense and style of humour, storytelling tendencies, smarts. Though there are some characteristics from that side of the family that I’m not so happy with  – short, hot temper and migraines, mainly.
  • When Grampi was my age, the Second World War was starting. The world has changed so much since then, in good ways and in bad.  I find it very hard to imagine the world that he grew up in.
  • That I really wish I’d had the chance to know my Grampi when I was an adult. We really adored each other when I was a child. I wonder what he would have made of me as an adult. He was great fun to play around with when I was a child. I know he was a really great person for an adult to sit down and have a laugh with. But I never got to have that experience.  I am really thankful for what I do have. A good relationship and good times had and still to have with my Dad and my aunt, and all the other members of the family. When we get together it’s easy to see those bit of Grampi in all of us, in the way we laugh together and the stories we tell. He’s in a lot of those stories – my Grampi was kind of legendary.

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