I returned last weekend from the east coast, where I celebrated my Grandmother’s 100th Birthday! She is doing VERY WELL, she can get around slowly, but pretty well, and her mind is clear as a bell. She remembers lots of things from her childhood. Her father ran a horse and wagon rental! One of the stories she mentioned to me struck a cord. She said that when she was a very young girl in school, one day they had a guest speaker in class. It was an old man (she said she remembers thinking “He’s SO OLD”, and he was probably in his 60s or 70s) who was in the Civil War! The Civil War is something so removed for me, something I can relate to only through movies (such as “Gone With the Wind”, etc.). To know someone who met someone who was there is mind boggling to me. I’m sure for the people of my Grandmother’s time (especially those 20-40 years younger), the Civil War was a major influence in their lives. To my generation and those younger, it is now just something we read about. Only a chapter in a history book. Even though it is responsible for the shape our lives have taken today. And the Civil War is only one thing. How about all the inventions, recorded pictures and sound (not to mention recorded music!), medicines, building materials, transportation, now the internet, and blogs, and on and on. It is a beautiful reminder how connected we all are. That man’s life and times influenced, shaped and touched my Grandmother’s life (literally and figuratively), and her life has done the same to mine. I keep thinking we are all separate, but we are all actually very connected.
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