Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Another Goodbye

Every year at Christmas, Grandma and Grandpa visited. They drove out to LA in their RV, bearing cookies and gifts. Chocolate Refrigerator Cookies, Sugar Cookies, Shortbread, Melt-a-Weighs. And a big tin of flavored popcorn for everyone, and a fresh deck of pinochle cards for each kid, and some kind of polished stone from their winter home in Quartzsite, Arizona. An ornament, usually handmade, sometimes by Grandpa himself. Grandpa had a video camera and documented the unwrapping of presents. Grandma, in the evening, sat at Daddy's upright piano and played carols, singing along, inviting the rest of us to join in as we pleased. As she got older, Daddy played more of the carols, but Grandma always sat near the piano as he did, and sang along with him.

After Christmas, we'd all pile into the car and follow them back to Quartzsite, where we'd spend a day or two wandering the swap meets, enjoying all the Christmas lights and decorations in the RV camp full of other retired grandparents enjoying a warmish winter.