Photo by Greg Paupst Sr.
There it is, in writing for the first time, for all the world to see … ‘my 70’s’.
To me, boldly written on this post’s title, it looks brutal. But the transition from my 60’s to my 70’s was a physical and spiritual non-event. Logically, I knew nothing would be different, but emotionally, well that was another matter. I had worried about the arrival of this new decade for weeks, but I am still me, the same me I was three weeks ago … except I have new memories.
My actual birthday was on a Friday. I awoke to the smell of coffee when my husband walked in with the aromatic brew and breakfast. I assembled the few gifts and cards that arrived the previous days and with a happy heart, enjoyed the java while opening the symbols of the loving thoughts of friends. Among them, was an unexpected and lovely surprise … exquisite music from Gerda.
My youngest son, Greg Jr. and his girlfriend, Tiffany, arrived later in the day … drinks, dinner, laughter, conversation.
Early Saturday morn, they helped me set up for Art in the Park. It was a wonderful day of sunshine, gentle breezes, good-natured artist friends, and meandering inquisitive souls enjoying art and an outting.
Setting up for ‘Art in the Park’ with Greg Jr. & Tiff
The four of us went out for dinner, a lovely way to end the day. But when I walked into the restaurant, my entire family was there (except my sweet, athletic, granddaughter Gabi, who was in Florida with her B Ball team). But my other 8 grands were there looking appropriately frisky, mischievous and delighted at surprising moi. And my five children (my best accomplishments in this life); and their wonderful, well-chosen, spouses and partners, were all looking at me with delight at having successfully carried out the subterfuge. Even my soon-to-be son-in-law from British Columbia was there.
Shenanigans – Bren building a tower of wine glasses at the restaurant (we were in a private room, so this was OK’d by staff)
A highlight of the evening was a wonderful, poignant video, Greg Sr. made of my life …
Greg + I, Student Nurses’ Formal, November 1964
Unknown to me, many of my family had been in town the day before. They even drove by ‘Art in the Park’, saw me there, but on orders from my husband, Greg, they had to stay incognito. He insisted they keep the surprise for the restaurant.
Greg lovingly planned and orchestrated the weekend event which continued all the next day … A picnic on the beach, part of Wasaga Beach Provincial Park. We had a blast – eating, drinking, playing frisbee, softball, swimming, being buried in the sand, and huddling under umbrellas and tarps during an hour or more of rain. But our spirits were not dampened. We chatted, laughed and carried on.
A few of my clan at the beach
Some of my children gave me large canvases so I can pursue attempts at painting in acrylics. For the three weeks since my birthday, we had our daughter, Joanna stay for three days. I drove three hours north to North Bay, Ontario for the funeral of my friend, Barb’s mother. Barb and I have been close friends since we were both 14 years old. A lot of history there.
In addition, my head has been a whirl with artistic ideas and concepts for my new canvases; with plans, shopping and ‘To Do’ lists for our daughter, Steph‘s wedding in less than three weeks; and plans for the weekly arrival of friends throughout the summer.
My 70’s, this new decade in my life, has begun with love, fun, anticipation. How fortunate am I!