I'll Hold Your Hand
I decided that if I keep trying to wait until I find perfect stories to post, I won't end up posting anything. So I think going forward, I'll just write short posts about my visits each week, since several weeks ago, I found myself drowning in video and decided to take notes in a notebook instead. And hopefully later, I'll have some time to go back and look at all the video I have and write stories the way I want them to be. Without further ado...
April 5th, 2011 Visit
A John Wayne movie is playing loudly on AMC when I come in the front door. The television is always on so loud. My grandmother comments on my sweater, and how she likes it. I thank her on my way down the hallway to wash my hands. When I return, it's like she's seeing the sweater for the first time and she comments on how pretty it is again. I imagine this will happen several more times during the visit.
My grandmother goes to serve the soup and she seems exhausted.
"How are you feeling?" I ask her.
"Tired, like usual," she says.
Tonight's dinner is roast chicken, wu tow goh (taro cakes), and melon soup of course. My grandfather brings out a bowl of peas, and a memory of loving peas, rice, gravy, and little bits of chicken floods my mind. I remember as a little girl when my grandparents would ask me what I wanted to eat, I would say, "Peas and rice and gravy... and chicken!" with great enthusiasm.
My grandmother complains about me taking pictures and I tell her that they took lots of pictures of me when I was a baby.
"I wish I took more," my grandfather laments.
"Why?" I ask.
"I missed all the good ones!" he says.
"What good ones?"
"Oh, the ones when you were here, running around playing."
I find that comment strange because I remember my grandfather taking pictures of me the majority of the time when I was little and there are so many pictures of me as a little kid.
We eat dinner and my grandparents try to teach me a little Cantonese. Mostly foods, and I take notes.
Later, they discuss my grandmother having to go to the doctor to have some blood tests taken. My grandmother seems nervous, and doesn't want to have to be poked with needles. My grandfather comforts her gently.
"I'll go with you," he says. "I'll hold your hand."