Tuesday, January 08, 2008

fifty-eight years ago today

my grandparents, fifty some odd years ago

It's hard for me not to think, when I look at that picture, what any potential future grandchildren of mine might think about photos of me and my youth and new love. I see my grandparents, smiling like the whole world was wonderful, shortly after they were married and I know that no image of me could ever possibly be so glamorous and beautiful. Beauty's so diluted these days. We pull a camera out of our pocket and document everything. Which is a little bit wonderful and is certainly one of my little obsessive pleasures, but maybe everyone looks so beautiful in old photographs because pictures were special and occasional. I don't have a whole shoebox full of photos of my grandma at age nineteen wearing pajamas and making silly faces. My future grandchildren will have, should the right shoebox fall into their hands, more documentation of my warts and all than will allow me the illusion of ever having been glamorous.

They look happy, don't they? I think they're still happy. I talk to my grandmother frequently. Last week she sewed and mailed to my daughter a long faux fur black coat, very chic with matching hat. My grandpa still putters around with his metal detector, scraping rusty treasures up out of the ground around the forgotten hills of New Mexico. He collects coins (and other things, I come by my fascination of old, useless stuff honestly) and just sent me, as a Christmas present, a proof set of coins minted the year I was born. I'm grateful for all the extra little relics and reminders we can gather up from them.

Happy Anniversary, Grandma Helen and Papa Johnnie. They don't read this, won't know I wrote this, but I think anyone who has been married so long as one day can appreciate the accomplishment of fifty-eight years together. A blessing, a challenge, a thing worth congratulating.


kathy of the east coast lopii said...

they're beautiful.

everything alright?

jess said...

what i love about this picture is that despite of it's obvious vintage, they look like real people. johnnie is so dashing and helen looks like so much fun (-i suppose my imagination is helped by the fact that i've met them before). i love the way your grandpa is looking right at the camera.

jess said...

um, grammar? maybe i should use the preview function, ya think?

Angelina said...

I love examples like this of couples who stayed the course. Mine grandparents didn't. And mine were all selfish and mean.

I like yours better.