Wednesday, 6 March 2013

The people I come from

This photo is from my Grandparents' senior prom back in 1953... I think it's just so hauntingly beautiful, but then again, I'm a little biased. :) My grandma's gown was powder blue, and she made it herself. My grandpa was looking handsome as ever.

They were in town this past week, and as always, I so enjoyed chatting with them and listening to stories from years passed. My grandpa was in the Korean War at the young age of 17, even earned a purple heart, and I learned of how narrowly he escaped death in the middle of one night in Korea where he was camped out with other soldiers... two other men had stubbornly refused to swap places with my Grandpa and "Tex" (a kid from Texas), even though they were supposed to switch guard or something (the men weren't being noble, they just wanted to stay where they were at for some reason), and moments later those two men were dead from flying shrapnel. If it weren't for their sacrifice, my grandpa wouldn't be here today, and neither would the complex set of DNA that makes up me. It was such a haunting revelation. Two young men I'll never know died in war in the 1950's, and because of them, I exist.

Amazing how interwined all our stories are. How every decision you make affects someone, somewhere, who may be living now, or may be living in 60 years.

After my grandpa served his 12 months in the Korean War, he returned home to New Jersey and high school... can you imagine? Going back to high school after serving in a war? He and my grandma met and dated, and he saved up his dimes until he had $250 for her ring. They'd spend weekends in New York City going to Broadway shows, and my Grandma, who was born in the Bronx, said they'd have to tell me all about their adventures in the city some day. I'll hold her to that!

I believe it's important to know and understand the people you come from, if you can. Their stories will make you laugh and cry and usually teach you a little something about yourself, too. I recently bought my grandparents this book and this book, and can't wait to read their answers. :)

My mom and grandma made my favorite Hungarian Beef and Cabbage last night... recipe here

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