Saturday, May 29, 2010

You Can't Go Home Again

Sorry, but this is the first time I have had an opportunity to sit down and type anything. We arrived in Orlando on May 10th and it has now been about three weeks since we arrived. Much like being overseas we are limited on Internet access. We have to go to a public library or to either my sister or my aunts home to get Internet otherwise and the girls are pretty hard up for access. We arrived and went to my sisters home where my mother was waiting for us to arrive since with kids and baggage there was no room for her to meet us at the airport. My sister has a nice place with a covered pool and the girls eyed it greedily. Later we proceeded to my mothers apartment and we saw that she had a one bedroom apartment with a small kitchen and living room. That night we blew up some air mattresses and the girls settled in for their first night.

My first goal was to see my grandmother. She had made it to almost 90 years and I was so fearful that another day would pass and it would be too late. So the next morning we took a drive to Sanford to the nursing home where she is living. I saw her the moment I was through the door. It was a hard shock having only seen a picture of her in the last 35 years and she had lost even more weight from the photo. But it was my grandmother. I can in my heart say she knew who I was but in reality she probably had no idea anymore than some stranger who walked in off the street. She was sitting in a common room and lying in a wheelchair lounger. I guess she was in quite a bit of pain and she was uncomfortable sitting. Needless to say we didn't stay for very long its hard to see someone you love in pain. We shot a few photos and then mom took us on a drive to Geneva where I grew up. I could picture some of the places but so much has changed in over 40 years since I had been up that old road. The weeds and trees now cover everything and you could not see more than a foot past the edge of the road. This was once the front of the house. We drove by the cemetery and I took a few photos of the headstones and we drove through the town and momma showed me a few historic places in town. A few days later we went to my Aunt Ruby's house and saw her and her husband Larry. I have memories of Ruby but none of Larry so it was like meeting someone for the first time. A few days later I got to see my aunt Mary and her sweetie John. They have six acres of land in Sanford and it has a small pond on it and boy I could stay here forever.
Most of the trip so far has gone pretty good but its hard being around people you haven't seen in so many years. There are times when things are strained with my mother and I had no memory of this but I guess my brother in law didn't care for me as I guess the first time I was too have met him was when I was picking up my two oldest girls at my mothers house over 20 years ago and I guess I ran in and out without a single word to him. I did apologize but who knows. You can't undo past. I have spent two weekends at my aunts house and one of them was when my aunt Anita came down from Georgia to see grandma. I got to meet her four children and a few of the kids of my uncle Mike and Mary's son Charlie. We had a nice get together but I will have to load photos later on that one. I'm on another user on the computer and I can't access all my photos.
Other than that, Fatimah had two assignments to finish while we were here and we have been photographing bugs and birds and all kinds of plants while we are here. We will have a few days of looking things up online to see and learn more about them. Well, here it is late and I will try to get a few more bits down before the trip is over and I forget half of what I did.