Saturday, September 20, 2008

nana

or "big nana" as we call her.  big in spirit and heart.  she is 90.  and so much she has seen these 90 years still amazes me.  she was born and raised in England, still retains her british accent.  she was content in england with a large loving family, but then came war and with that 1 american soldier, Allen Zecchinelli.  well that forever changed the course of this lady. from her story she played hard to get, or more like "get lost you silly american."  but Allen persisted and soon she was introducing him to her family and searching for their approval to marry.   and so brought this englishwoman to the hills of vermont.  to a strange land and people for the love of one man.  and there she still resides.  steadfast in her devotion to her community, her church, and her family.  her brothers and sisters all still in england and how she misses them so, but she is stubborn and will not leave america, even now long after her spouse had passed.  she said she made a choice all those years ago to make a home here and so it is.  she talks of the war, the bombings , the air raids, the shelters,  of riding her bicycle everywhere in the english countryside, of her corker brothers and wonderful sisters, of her Allen, of their life in the pharmacy in their town.  she had 2 children then 2 grandchildren (my husband being 1) and now 5 great grandchildren.  she adores them.  she sings silly songs and dances round the room, slapping her knee, or bounces up and down, anything to get a grin or giggle out of the little ones.  she walks miles each day(this is NO small task being she lives in rural northern vermont where ice and snow can start in oct and not give way to spring til april) , months that are too treacherous to walk outdoors she takes herself to the high school and walks laps around the gym, she still drives, is on the board of the historical society, deeply ingrained in her church and her duties there, mentors 3 students each year from the local school.  she is steadfast, strong, stubborn, opinionated, loving, generous, funny, smart, classy, a plain out inspiration in spirit and mind.  she fell last week, tripped on a rug, badly bruised her face and banged herself up pretty good, this has slowed her some, but that only makes her madder.  she is a feisty one and i love her for it.  we took a drive up to surprise her.  i know she was so happy for it.  i know she is 90, she knows she is 90.  i took one shot of the kids and she kissing on the couch.  my husband, who was not along for the trip, saw it and immediately got choked up about it.  he said in one vein you can see how utterly happy she is.  but on the other hand how incredibly sad as well knowing that no matter how stubborn she is or how hard she fights her aging body she will not be here to see them to adulthood, to marry or have families of their own.  this picture encapsulates all of this.  i am glad to have captured it for them.  so someday they will see it too and see how deeply she loved them.  we love you nana.  no more trips on the rug ok?   we need to keep you around.  i am so very proud to know and love this lady.

7 comments:

jfrancis said...

the years bring joy,
a life of memories,
stolen from England
given to us.

Diane said...

Ohh, I'm all teary eyed and choked up now. I love that last shot of them. How lucky that they get to have each other now!!

hippyhappyhay said...

Beautiful post k. What a wonderful, beautiful, inspiring woman. Thank you so for sharing her with us for a moment.
Hugs.

Brandi said...

thank you for sharing this amazing woman with us.

Bunny said...

I first saw the B&W shot in your Flickr stream, but couldn't come up with a worthy comment. This was beautifully written and really gives some more of the story that goes along with such a beautiful subject. You make me teary thinking about her and my own grandmother. Realistically, we know they will not be here on this earth with us much longer. But we can enjoy the time we get to spend with them now.

ELK said...

what touching words and priceless photos ~ I am glad to be your blog friend!

Maureen said...

Achingly beautiful...I'm choked up too as I have no one older than me in my family, and I'm 64. I never knew I'd miss them when I got this old. How the heart surprises you.