My grand parents had their 60th anniversary the other day. That’s right. Sixty. That is so crazy. Most of the time, I kind of just take it for granted that they are still with us, and very active and quite healthy, all things considered. But if I think about it, that is nuts. And really amazing. We call them Pake and Beppe, it’s Frisian for Grandpa and Grandma. And what’s a Frisian, you might ask? Well, Frisians come from Friesland, which is a province in Holland that is basically to the Netherlands what Quebec is to Canada, from what I understand anyways. They are part of the country, but speak a different language and at one point, tried to separate and become their own country. They are known for being stubborn and independant and very proud of their heritage. So much so, that after a bunch of them immigrated to Canada, they decided they needed a day to celebrate being Frisian. So obviously, they hijacked Canada Day, booked a conservation area, organized some games and called it Frisian Day. This is not a joke, I’ve been going every year since I was born. It’s so ridiculous, that you just kind of have to go with it. And laugh, because it’s also pretty funny.
Anyways, so that’s where I’m descended from.
Back to Pake and Beppe.
[look at them. couple of cuties.]
They booked a room at Southcote 53 (which is, incidentally, just down the road from my dad’s childhood home. How nice.) so we could all sit down for a delicious dinner together. Afterwards, my dad and his siblings each took turns telling short little memories of their parents, their childhood and growing up. We laughed and we cried, and it was just really cool to see them all up there and to think that they were all kids once who grew up together, just down the street. We also got to hear the story (from both points of view) of how Pake and Beppe met/fell in love. And for whatever reason, I’ve never thought to ask them about that before, and as it turns out, Pake is quite the romantic.
It was really good to be reminded of how things in life can have these inauspicious beginnings, you don’t even usually know something big is happening at the time. Until one day, you look around a room and it’s filled with people you love and who love you deeply. And you realize that all those seemingly trivial events that got you here were actually the most important things. The small things, the hard things, the day to day things. They get you where you need to go. And I’m so grateful for that. Because my family’s pretty cool, and I don’t know what I’d do without them.