August 21, 2011

Looking to the past...

One day while in Long Island, I sat with my aunt and we looked through some old photographs of our family. There were photos of new houses, honeymoons, babies, family pets and big groups of friends. A lot of the pictures were taken in the 1930s.
I never really knew my grandparents. A combination of being born 6000 miles away from them and my father being born later in their lives. My grandfather came to visit us in Japan when I was about 2 or 3 and I have patchy memories of that time. 
My aunt says that my grandparents were a real 'love match' and I believe it. 

These photos were taken on their honeymoon. 


Sometimes I think that as a society we are so preoccupied with "the new" and looking towards the future that we disregard the past. There's a distinct difference between dwelling on the past (which is not so good) and looking back toward it with curiosity (which is good). I feel like so much emphasis is placed on us as individuals that sometimes it would be good to pause, give our egos a break and think about how amazing and crazy it is that if not for chance meetings that were made so many years ago, we might not be here. So go hang out with some older relative and make the most of them. 


Randy said...

I love what you wrote, Amber. I, being one of the much older cousins, am lucky enough to have known Nana and Pop-Pop very well. I remember Pop-Pop making the trip over to Japan to see you. He was enamored with you. He said you talked like a truck driver. Pop-Pop used to laugh a lot, especially after exclaiming something, much like Popeye. You would say to him, "Not funny!" He got a big kick out of that. Pop-Pop was a show biz guy - actor and musician - at one point. Nana made him quit the glamorous life (he was in a play with Mae West on Broadway!) and go into something more stable. Hence, he became a laundryman. Hope to see you soon. Love, Randy

Karin G said...

Amber, I love this!! The pictures speak for themselves but your words add eloquence and insight. Some day I'll write down all my memories of Nana and Pop-Pop--there are so many to share. One thing that inspires me often is Nana's contentment with her life. She rarely complained and was always happy being where she was and doing what she was doing. Hope all is well--I miss you!
xoxo Karin

Anonymous said...


Sorry I didn't get to see you on your last visit. Life's a lot more complicated (in a good way) these days. NaNa and PopPop were a match made in heaven. Reading your words makes me realize how fortunate I was (being the oldest grandchild) to have spent so much times with then. My memories, even the oldest ones, are still so vivid. I'm sure that's because of the love they bestowed on me, each and every time I was with them.

All the Best,