Saturday, September 27, 2008

An Inspirational Woman

I had some sad news this week. My gorgeous Great-Grandma passed away. She had lived to a ripe old age - 100 years and nine months old. She had lived through two World Wars and the g
German Occupation of Jersey. Up until two weeks ago she was still living in her home alone and looking after herself.

My first memories of Granny are visiting her at the Station House and long weekends spent playing in the gardens with my friends. As a child this was a dream – she lived in a real Station House, where trains had once stopped! And the gardens seemed to stretch on forever.

I had sleepovers with her which I adored. She said it was the only time that she used to sleep through the night. We spent so many enjoyable weekends together. She taught me how to cook, and how to sew.

One weekend she made clothes for my favourite teddy bear (imaginatively named ‘Pink Ted’). She made him trousers, a waistcoat, a cape, and even a peaked cap! He was the best-dressed bear on the island.

At nights we sat together and chatted in front of the open fire. They were very happy days.

As I grew older and left the island for university, Granny became my pen pal. We used to write every week, and whenever I traveled anywhere in the world, I would always find a good postcard to send to her. I loved seeing one of her letters arriving on the doormat, full of news, and her sense of humour jumped off the page.

Over the years a succession of my friends have been to visit Granny on my many trips home. Without exception they have all been enchanted by her spirit, tenacity and kindness. Some of them even became pen pals with her.

The last time I saw her was January this year. Despite being almost a hundred at this stage, she had been putting up a full length mirror in her wardrobe the woman had diy skills to shame mine! She was full of life and laughter and was very tickled by me trying on her various hats (her wardrobe was still jam packed with outfits.)

I've been lucky enough to have some very strong and inspiratinal female role models in my life, and she ranks as the best. I shall miss you Granny.

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