Memorial Day

Here in the States we have a national holiday today called …

Memorial Day.

It is a holiday to commemorate the men and women who died in military service for my country.

Though being a day to honor the memory of those passing in service,

For some,

It also brings to the forefront personal memories of loved ones passed,

Regardless of military service.

I was very close with my Grandpa and Grandma Hairdy,

My paternal grandparents.

I was close with my maternal grandparents too,

But they passed when I was much younger,

And still lived in Tennessee,

So I just didn’t have the opportunity to spend that much time with them.

I did however,

Spend a lot of time with my Grandpa and Grandma Hairdy.

I lived with them one summer during college when I found a job for the summer months in their hometown,

Sometimes I’d take a bus to their place for the weekends during college when we’d all meet up at their house for family gatherings,

And their house was a halfway point on my way home from college,

So I always stopped at their place on my way back to see Mom, Dad and Baby Brother ,,,

For some high quality Grandma nourishment.

And every now and then …

On those occasions when I was going to crash at their place,

After feasting on one of Grandma Hairdy’s masterpieces,

Grandpa and I,

And sometimes Grandma,

Would toss back a few shots of whiskey.

Just a few,

Mind you,

While we would talk,

Grandpa and Grandma would tell me of my ancestry,

Stories and events of family past.

To this day,

I speak much better Czech when I’m totally sauced up,

Than not.

Go figure. :-)

And to this day,

I honestly feel close to Grandpa and Grandma Hairdy.

They passed before getting the chance to meet Me Ver. 2.0,

But I really don’t think they have a problem with it.

I don’t think it came as any surprise to Grandma Hairdy,

And if it did,

She’d be “so what“.

Maybe in his younger day Grandpa Hairdy might have been …

Huh?

But my Grandpa Hairdy,

Would ask me a bunch of questions,

And when he was sure I had considered everything,

Would say something along the lines of …

Well, sounds like you covered everything. Wanna do a shot?

Now I don’t just go visit Grandpa and Grandma Hairdy on Memorial Day,

But Mom, Dad, Baby Brother and I made the trip to their cemetery Saturday,

And I …

Did what I always do when I go see Grandpa and Grandma:

I take some Canadian Mist,

Grandpa’s non-Czech whiskey of choice,

And do some shots with Grandpa and Grandma.

One for me,

Two for Grandpa,

One for Grandma.

Rinse and Repeat …

Until Empty.

Grandpa and Grandma get a kick out it,

Though sometimes I do get some looks.

Whatever.

It’s not everyday that one gets the opportunity to make a gesture of respect,

Also one founded in meaning and memories.

Besides,

I’m really not that much of a flower girl anyways. :-)

Happy Memorial Day All !!!

Remember good things ! :-)

(View a mini-slide show of me doing shots with Grandpa and Grandma.)

Editor’s Note:

One of my viewers posted a comment that observed part of this post misconstrued the meaning/definition of Memorial Day here in the States. In reviewing the words I had chosen to try and phrase my thoughts at the time, I appreciate what my Viewer was saying. As such, I’ve removed my poorly chosen words and replaced them with hopefully more accurate, less bothersome words. Though since reference to the original words are in the comment section to this post, I’ve pasted the original verbage below so the comments will make sense if you’re reading them.

It originally was a holiday meant to commemorate men and women who died in military service for my country.

Though as time has progressed,

It has also sort of become a day of memory for all loved ones passed,

Regardless of military service.

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9 Comments

  1. Hey you !!! I know who you are !!! 🙂 *hugs*

    Thanks for the comment !!! I’m glad to hear you weren’t upset when you posted your original comment, because when I read what you were referencing … I totally appreciated what you were saying and certainly didn’t mean to show disrepect or demean the holiday and its true meaning. Thank you for bringing it to my attention ! 🙂

    I do hope we will get to meet up again !!! 🙂

    Take care of you !!! 🙂

  2. Amy,
    I appreciate the time you took to clarify what you meant. I wasn’t upset when I wrote my previous post. I was simply a little confused. I am a veteran and have lost a few friends. So, although this holiday means something to me and many others, I want you to know that I am not upset. I chose to omit my name or any clue to my identity because we have met before (chicago trip). And I didn’t want this to become an issue if we meet again. Although, the likelihood of such grows less with time. You seem like a very nice person and I enjoyed your company shopping with you in Chicago.
    I think you should be commended for continuing to remember your grandparents the way you do. You have always come across as a very nice person. Thank you for keeping your site going.
    me.

  3. I phrased it wrong … sorry. I certainly didn’t mean any disrespect to those for whom the holiday is meant to honor, they deserve more than just a holiday in my book. I simply meant to convey that a lot of people seem to also take the opportunity on Memorial Day to celebrate the memories of all of their loved ones passed, in addition to those who passed while serving my country. I used the phrase you object to as a transition from the definition of Memorial Day as a holiday to honor the memories of those who passed in servivce of my country to how I ended up talking about my Grandma and Grandpa, neither of whom were in the miliary service. I’ll look at the language when I’m fully awake and try to rephrase it in a way less offensive to you. Sorry again. Thanks for the feedback. And to those in the military or my veterans … thank you for your service. I’m very sorry if I offended any of you with how I phrased my post.

  4. I don’t want to sound like a complete f!@#$ head, however, I have never heard that Memorial Day has “become a day of memory of all loved one’s passed, regardless of military service.”
    It has always been a military connected holiday. Although I don’t want to say you can’t memorialize your grandparents whenever you want, I don’t believe that Memorial Day should somehow “morph” into something that it is not.

  5. …ironically…I too speak much better Czech when I’m totally sauced up…

    …not that I’d even recognize Czech if I heard it….but what comes outa me could just as likely be Czech as anything else…

    *grins*

  6. Amy
    That is so beautiful! you really are a special girl with a heart of gold ! and i am sure your grandparents are happy you are there..so sweet .

  7. That is truly a cool ritual. In fact, I feel a song about it coming on.

    Speaking of tunes, Amy, my gig here went great on Saturday. A really talented new friend who played there last week sat in with me on mandolin, slide, and lead guitar. We’d never played together before that night and he played on my original stuff like he’d had the CD for years…and there is no CD.

  8. Good for you, Amy … I’ll bet Grandpa and Grandma Hairdy enjoy your visits too.

    Speaking of whiskey stories … my Grandma gave us kids a tablespoon of Grandpa’s whisky if we were coming down with a cold … kinda’ the old-timey version of Night-Time Nyquil …. seemed to do the trick, too! Of course, we’d then sleep like logs through the night–haha! Gawd, that stuff was nasty! I’ll take cherry Nyquil, thank you very much.

    Thanks for sharing … glad you had yourself a good day.

    Smiles,
    Sharon

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