It would have been my Grandma’s birthday today. It felt strange sending Christmas presents to my Aunt, Uncle and cousins without the random one with birthday paper. Of course when I looked for the address in my book I realised that although I’ve bothered to write their mobile numbers and email addresses in I haven’t actually filled out the address, no for that I have to flick to the ‘L’s rather than ‘A’s and there she is neatly filled out with the address that I just haven’t got around to writing anywhere else yet.
I saw the perfect gift for Great Uncle Arthur the other day too. TS Eliot in English with Japanese translation and illustrations. Not much point in buying for the dead though.
I wish I could send her a letter about the Jellicle Cat, ask her what she thought. I’d like to tell her about my flat too, and have her bitch at me about how she never had such a big place to herself. Then would inevitably come the grudge against Uncle Arthur from when she was 14. I know the stories by heart, I know the ones that Aunty Susan and cousin Emma wished she’d never told them, I know a couple that she said Dad would never have approved of, I know the ones that everybody knew by heart, I know the ones that Uncle Arthur would interupt the telling of.
The tears are ones shed internally. I never really cried for my Grandma, she never really left in some ways. I guess you can link that to the lack of tears. I cried more when she was alive and ill, and then I cried a lot. I remember one poor guy getting into trouble after he trekked across town because I’d rung him sobbing uncontrollably after she had her second stroke.
People have said before now that I have no feelings. Well I think that after trying that for a period in Royston Vasey (oh the joys of drug induced numbness) I could never do that again. But I must do something with these things that could pour out of me like some sort of flood (oh do be careful Burt Reynolds, Dean Martin and the like…!) oh the joys of appropriate behaviour. She knew you see. Because she could be very like me when it came down to honesties that people would rather not have heard.
Happy Birthday Grandma. Wish you were here.