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Monday 8 October 2007


It's hard to always feel thankful. I must admit that I wasn't feeling very thankful exactly one week ago today when we were saying our final farewells to Ron's Father. Then there was that other sudden phone call about my Mother being in the hospital. But there is something about Thanksgiving that makes one really stop and think about things - take another assessment. This year I find my mind keeps returning to last Thanksgiving which we spent with Ron's parents in Brockville, Ontario. It was beautiful weather all weekend in this historic old Loyalist town on the St. Lawrence River that was named for Sir Isaac Brock - Canada's hero in the War of 1812. It was the way it should be at Thanksgiving - cool enough to wear jackets but sunny enough to have blue skies behind those beautifully coloured leaves. That contrasts with today which is incredibly hot and muggy with hazy skies. The first morning in Brockville we got up early enough to catch some rowers in the mist on the St. Lawrence silhouetted against the rising sun. We walked around Blockhouse Island - which was one of Ron's Dad's favourite spots to watch the boats and the ships going down the river. His Dad also took us on a driving tour of the area and we ended up watching ships go through the locks at Prescott, Ontario. His Dad's fascination with ships probably goes back to his Navy days in WWII. Later he would talk about those days and the many adventures he had while assigned to a harbour patrol boat in Sidney, NS. One evening we also would play a friendly game of Euchre and wagers would be placed. At the end of the tournament Ron and I found ourselves up a Loonie in spite of the usual cross table talk by our opponents - such as when his Dad would ask or perhaps state, "Now if I order my partner up I have to go alone right?". We would laugh when he would then decide to pass and Ron's Mom would pick it up, and laugh even harder when his Dad would complain about us getting into his whiskey - something he rarely touched himself. We were always told it would be added to our bill which we would get in the morning - and of course which we never received. No doubt also over the weekend Ron's Dad and I would have one of our "discussions" - a sort of debate of the politics of the day as he took his role as a Senior seriously with its requirement to complain about the government full-time. But in these debates he always let me be who I was too, and let me have my own opinion - seemed even to appreciate that I had one. No doubt I've missed an interesting discussion about this week's Ontario election and referendum. Last Thanksgiving wasn't our last visit with Ron's Dad but it was one of those memories I am savouring and am extremely thankful to have. So this Thanksgiving I am thankful for last Thanksgiving and having had 27 years to get to know Ron's Dad. Of course I am also thankful for the same things I always have been - the love of a wonderful spouse, our health, and family. But as we mourn my Father-in-law and worry about our Mothers it hit me that I should be thankful for the fact that I'm part of TWO wonderful families! That's a lot to be thankful for! Some images from the way home: - Swirling water in the Jones Falls Lockstation on the Rideau Canal, Jones Falls, Ontario
St. Barnaby's Catholic Church, Seeleys Bay, Ontario

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

How wonderful to have this special tribute full of memories of your father-in-law. And even though it has been a sad week for the family, it is good that you can still be thankful for the many gifts that you have. Ron's photos are extremely beautiful, just like the love of those we hold dear.

10 October 2007 at 11:13  
Blogger Beck said...

Lori, this was beautiful.
I'm so sorry about your father-in-law - he sounds like he was such an interesting man.

10 October 2007 at 15:22  

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