Ireland

Ireland

Monday, January 14, 2013

Last Spring I attended a family
St. Patty's Day reunion, which was generously hosted by 
my cousin.

As nice as it was to catch up with
relatives I don't see regularly,
my favorite part of that day was the 30 minutes I spent
talking one on one with my awesome
Aunt Helen.


She saw the world by way of riding freighters.
You know, big ships!
By herself!
How cool is that?

Her resume as a Mother
holds much more important information,
but as a mariner
I always connected with Aunt Helen
because of her riding the high seas.

She passed away the other day.

She was the coolest 96 year old
former freighter rider
EVER!

Yesterday we were sharing stories of Aunt Helen and my daughter,
who attended the St. Patty's day gathering, mentioned,
 "I still can't get over the fact that my 96 yr old great Aunt
drank me under the table."
Jameson was their drink of choice.

My generation of cousins numbers enough
to form a football team 
complete with special team players.

Aunt Helen was the last remaining "adult" of her generation
in our family.
To quote a cousin,
"All of our generation are now orphans."

Now what do we do?

13 comments:

Joey said...

Awwww - so sorry Mark. It is amazing to me that we often overlook our elders and if we just sat and talked to them, oh the places we would go! We, as in the universal "we", forget that our elders lived long lives. And they have countless, MANY, MANY experiences to share if we would only listen. Obviously, you get that. Glad you had that day together.

BTW - were you all banged up back then too? Walk into a tree much?

bon bon said...

a lovely tribute, mark. our elders have so much wisdom if we would all just take the time to listen. glad she gave you some great stories to pass down.

Donna said...

Mark
SO sorry for your loss. She sounds like a remarkable woman; as MY granny would say - "A real pip!"
As far as what you do next - you go on...and live your life in such a way that you leave as many wonderful memories - and funny stories - for the next generation as the ones who have gone before left for you!
Peace...

Donna said...

Mark
SO sorry for your loss. She sounds like a remarkable woman; as MY granny would say - "A real pip!"
As far as what you do next - you go on...and live your life in such a way that you leave as many wonderful memories - and funny stories - for the next generation as the ones who have gone before left for you!
Peace...

Karen said...

Raising a glass of Jameson on ice in honor of your Aunt Helen, one incredible woman.

Another bandaid?......

Cait Throop said...

A glorious generation, that's for sure! My Mom is 92 and she with my Dad went on freighters all over the world! I'm sorry about your Aunt though it sounds like she really lived her life...and what more could we ask for? But it doesn't make it any easier when they've gone and left us! My condolences, Mark. Lovely tribute!

beth said...

i'm so sorry for your fame's loss, but wow, she lived a good life....you can see it in her eyes!! what a blessing she lived as long as she did, that your girls have memories of her...even if they're drinking memories :)

Melinda Owens said...

So sorry for your loss. She sounds like one of a kind! What a great legacy though, huh? And what a way to see the world.

SueAnn Lommler said...

So sorry Mark...tis sad to lose our older generation. So much richness in their lives!!
Glad you got to spend some quality time with her.
I live so far away...I don't have the opportunity to see my relatives. Most of them! Makes me sad!
Enjoy yours!
Hugs
SueAnn

Jerral Miles said...

Mark, Thanks for this wonderful tribute to your Aunt Helen. Reading it I felt a sense of loss... and remembered with reverence and gratefulness people like Aunt Helen in my family.

Barefoot from Heaven said...

Hi there you. I'm sorry for your loss. She really looks like quite a hand full. Wish I could have been there and listened to her stories. I'm a sucker of old stories.
What happend to the side of your head, did she smack you one over with your bottle of beer before she hand it out to you? no just kidding. Was that from the branche too or did a tree or flower hit you this time round?
Again I hope you cherish wonderful memories of your aunt. Be well my friend. And do cross the seas for her now, catch the big waves.
By my friend talk soon.
Hugs Dagmar

Marilyn said...

What a very special aunt. I love that she was adverturesome. Good for her for stepping out there.

dcpeg said...

So sorry, Mark. At the same time, I'm glad that your family enjoyed and cherished her for as long as you got to. She sounds like a remarkable woman. Maybe your brother should write about her.