Grandma’s Place

As you might remember, grandma passed away last November and I’ve been missing her ever since. It’s not that I saw her that often, but I liked to know she was always there. For the past 18 years I made plans to stay with her for a week and learn how to make green walnuts jam, biscuits and cheese pie, but I never got around to do it. She lived in the countryside, she only got a toilet 5-10 years ago, the summers were too hot and the winters too cold and so on. Excuses, excuses. And now she’s no more.

_MG_2801.jpgAnd since her house is on the market, what better way to say goodbye than visit it one last time, eat some fruit right from the tree, crack some walnuts with my heel, gather a couple of things as souvenirs, walk around with reverence in what used to be my holiday home, too.

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I told my niece we were going to see “mamaia batrana”- “The old grandma”, as she used to call her, and she replied “But she’s dead! She went to England!” with such an ironic voice I didn’t know if she meant it or if she was just pulling my leg. Haha!

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There we met my uncle, we’ve always been such good friends, at least I’ve always thought we are, even though I never remember birthdays and I rarely call anybody. You see, in Romania people put great importance on little things like these, whereas I only appreciate the bigger picture- so what if you call me for my birthday if you are never there when I need you.

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Little Red Riding Hood was cheerful and sweet, she borrowed my camera and took pictures of everything, like an artist! Most of them were a bit blurry and some people got their heads cut, but hey, it takes time to learn how handle such a big camera, which is why I’m so getting her a smaller one! 😉

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It was incredibly hot for September- 31 degrees and I rejoiced in the sight of walnuts and quinces, grapes and figs, as though I’d been in paradise. 😉

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Every corner reminded me of something- I could hear grandma saying “stop skipping there, you’ll ruin my chrysanthemums!”- and there was my garden where I used to collect cuttings from cemetery plants, cause they could do with little water, here I had my brine collection: Yes, I was a strange child, too, the way I’m a slightly strange adult now. Haha!

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The grapes tasted like incense, they’re called “struguri tamaiosi”, and they’re the best I’ve ever had. Unfortunately they don’t keep as well, so they’re best eaten straight from the vine.

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We only found one ripe fig and I shared it with Kristin, instantly thinking of the late Septembers in the garden, chasing chicken and cats and hiding from grandma so as to skip the afternoon nap.

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Farewell grandma, farewell house, farewell garden, farewell childhood! ❤

xxx, Alina

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