Sunday, March 16, 2008

2 1/2 Months ago: Wisconsin

I never really got a chance to write about my grandma's funeral and Wisconsin visit, did I? I meant to, but so many things crowd other things out of the way. I was glad I was there for the funeral. So many people that I've known over the years: relatives, my grandma's friends, neighbors. I spent a wonderful summer with my grandparents after I graduated from college. My grandpa played with my cat alot, devising toys from long girl's hair ties (perhaps they'd been mine from when I was a little girl). We played King's Corners a lot. My grandpa had pals that he played horseshoes with, and we women played cards inside. One of those guys wondered if I remembered him. Of course I did.
(Photo above: view from living room into kitchen. The mirror on the right is a door that leads up the stairs, or up one triangular step and down through another door into the kitchen. One of the peculiarities of the house that I will miss.)

I liked that the minister echoed pretty much everything my mom had been saying to visitors as we stood together in the receiving line. I liked that he is a third or fourth cousin of mine. I asked her later if he'd talked to her about that. I didn't like that he made it a pulpit for salvation or damnation. He said something like "we are so fortunate that we believe." This coming soon after mentioning my grandma's concern for her family, I had to wonder if he was trying to tell me something in particular. The Buddhist. The non-believer. That was so not my grandma. Much like this atheist encountered at his grandfather's funeral. I was surprised when he approached me about a tiny bit of research I did about our great grandparents for my grandma. He was hoping I could find out something further, like where they came from in Germany. I said I would try. I haven't had time, and not sure I have the ability. I couldn't help but wonder though, after the angels in heaven because we're believers speech, if I wasn't his mission.

In the month after I had disquieting dreams of being in my grandma's house, sorting through her things, sometimes with my mom, and my aunt, her sister Kay. Sometimes these things seemed so significant, now they are gone, like the non-corporeal whisps that they were. The hardest part about staying at her house was saying goodbye to all the memories, triggered by all her things. I talked to my mom about it Friday night...she and Kay had done that sorting for real, and had the big rummage sale this weekend. She also thought they might have a buyer for the house. That refuge will be there no more for me. We were sad that some things that meant so much would sell for so little. At least my nephew got the late 30's bedroom furniture set that was in "my" room. It was my grandparent's first bed when they got married.

My mom's husband is keeping this old thing from the door to the garage for the memories. He's going to have my nephews with touch it up with their airbrush. My grandma worked in a plastics molds and screen-printing factory, came home with these oddball things.
While I was there I got to see my twin nephews wrestle (not each other...the other team). Unfortunately they lost. I was struck by the sheer physicality of that sport, and amazed that it is so popular in such a homophobic state. Ummm, what happens if they get aroused. Somebody must?
I also got to visit with my stepfather's sister. The two families are not speaking. I encouraged her not to let that keep her from keeping connected to my nephews. She is a godparent to one of them. She and I went to the wrestling match together, after a long heart to heart
I also got to see my dad. Below is the first post I did on my library 2.0 blog, mentioned my visit with dad. He made pancakes for me after our little visit to the library. He plans to stay in Fond du Lac, closer to my brother. I ran out of archive on my lib 2.0 blog, oh that has been so annoying.
My first library blog post:
I recently made an unexpected visit to my home state of Wisconsin. One of the many reasons I escaped Wisconsin is the below-freezing winter norm. I feel I am slowly catching up after two weeks of vacation, a short week at work, and another week absent in Wisconsin. Now I just have a short time to get this blog started.

I already keep three other blogs, one personal (email me privately if you care to see it) and two for my volunteer work with the Buddhist Peace Fellowship. I think for this blog I will stick to library stuff, and will consider an audience wider than MCL employees, such as the folks in my branch's Pageturners.

Anyway, in Wisconsin I got to visit my dad, who is living in a new town for him. We went for a walk, and he showed me his library, the Fond Du Lac Public Library.

Fond Du Lac Public Library, Wisconsin

It is an award-winning library, looks beautiful inside.

Some features:

art in the Fond Du Lac Library

stacks, Fond Du Lac Library book return reading lounge

My dad amused himself while waiting for me to check it all out. I liked their signage, see above.

Dad reading the paper

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