Saturday, December 15, 2007

Grandma's Service

As many of you know, ths trip wasn't just a tourist or "homeland" jaunt for me. I am partially here in Hong Kong to help bury my grandmother's ashes in with my grandfather's grave.

I have been particularly wary of this portion of the trip, for a variety of reasons. For one thing, this will be my third time participating in some form of a memorial service for my grandmother, and secondly, because i will not know most of the people at the service. I have to admit to being somewhat torn between the fact that burying my grandmother in Hong Kong will mean that i would have a hard time visiting her, but at the same time, she wanted so very much to be buried with my grandfather.

This would also be my first trip to my grandfather's grave, a man i have never met, but who has played such an important role in my father's life. As i suspected, my grandmother's service on that day was much more about my grandfather than about my grandmother. My grandmother's life in Hong Kong was about and linked to her husband, just as her life was linked to her children and grandchildren in the United States. The people who gathered for the service knew my grandmother mostly through her role as the pastor's wife and their respects to her, were as much about my grandfather as they were to her. My father was looking forward to meeting one of my grandfather's old friends, who also gave him an old letter that my grandfather wrote to him. Upon receiving the letter and recognizing the letters and handwriting, my father wept.

This is the gravesite.

The view from the site is quite impressive. The graveyard overlooks a large hillside and there was a nice breeze that came from the valley. Here is the view.

I did meet some of my grandparents' old friends, but they were not exactly talkative about them, perhaps because they themselves were well into their 80s and the lives and times of the young were far more interesting to them.

1 comment:

John said...

Great stuff Linus. I know how it feels to connect with your roots like this... I feel it whenever we go back to Greece.