The Best Christmas Gift…

 
Grateful Blog: Day 31: This year I got a book for Christmas called ‘Life on the Working Man’s Lake: A Tour of Honeoye Now and Then’. It was a portrait of one ofNew York’s ‘Finger Lakes’:HoneoyeLake, in the country of the 5 Confederacies of the Iroquois (a governing body that has been recognized as influencing the very notions of our nation’s democracy). In any respect,HoneoyeLakewas home to many a summer residents who kept cabin’s there starting in the Great Depression for recreation from the nearby cities of RochesterandBuffalo. It’s county where my family grew up. The book is full of memories and family stories, most before my time. But there’s something common that comes out in the telling about the Sears and Roebuck cabins, and the old dirt roads covered with oil (to keep the dust down), that still brings me back to being a little kid, visiting Grandma and Grandpa: Lightning bugs, playing croquet and swimming–and fishing with Grandpa driving the boat. That was probably almost 40 year ago now. It’s a cool little book, a most thoughtful gift form Mom. Last time I was back home we took a drive out there. I again skipped black shale stones across the smooth, calm water and saw the lake for the first time in maybe 20 years. When I opened the book, I found a history I new nothing about. It was cool. My grandfather bought several lots for $15 apiece. That was the price—if (and only if, you ordered a 6 month subscription to the localRochester,NYnewspaper, ‘The Times Union’). It’s hard to believe that now. Heck, it’s hard to believe much of ANYTHING now. Somewhere in the pages there were stories of my family, how my Dad swam a mile across the lake and back (and home to a pretty upset Mother…). The thing was, every memory seemed fresh, like the smell of those oil roads when the heat of the day would bake in them. And then I turned the page to see a photo of my Grandmother I’d never seen before—and maybe the first photo I’d seen of her in the 30 years since she’d died. I couldn’t honestly believe it. Every day I’ve been writing this ‘blog’ because I’ve been trying to stick to a New Year’s resolution to find one thing every day to be Grateful for. My God, seeing Grandma for the first time in forever, before the cancer, when the cottage and summer was still ours…well, Grateful doesn’t begin to describe it…it’s more a blessing, and tonight, that memory is more than enough to be Grateful for…Peace!