Easter and Grandma Allen

I loved Easter when I was little because my Grandma Allen always came to visit us in Puerto Rico over Easter.  She loved the sunrise service they did on El Morro (the old fort in San Juan).  I loved going to that service as well, because it was beautiful and sort of mystical.  But mostly Easter was wonderful because it was the season of Grandma Allen.

Grandma Allen visited for a month at a time.  She liked to make the cost of the trip worthwhile, I guess.  She was known to stretch a nickel until it screamed.  Even if the nickel was my father’s, which in this case, it was.

My parents often took their “no children” vacations when grandma came to visit.  At least, they did until my grandmother got the notion to upholster the couch while they were on vacation. She chose the cheapest, most durable fabric she could procure.  Sadly the fabric was hideous, which was not a factor my grandmother considered.  She raised a family in the depression.  Beauty was not a consideration when you had to clothe and feed 3 children and a husband.

It turned out that my mother, despite growing up in the depression, did not feel the same way about beauty.  As a result, the surprise was not so much a happy one for my mother.  Her bitterness lasted for decades.

After that a woman named Mrs. McGillicuddy came to stay when Mom and Dad took vacations.

Grandma always brought energy to the house.  She always played games, she was always up to see a new place (as long as it wasn’t on a boat) and she never ever yelled.

We had a sailboat.  However, my grandmother tended to get seasick just standing on the pier.  So she couldn’t go on the sailboat.  So my father, who paid for my grandmother to come visit us, couldn’t go sailing for the entire time she was there.  I was an adult before I recognized how much of a trial that must have been for him.  But he, like everyone, adored my grandmother.

Well.  My mom did have some mother /daughter issues.

Anyway, Easter makes me think of Grandma.

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