The picture above is one of my favorite photos ever taken of my Grandmother, Libby. She's the one in the middle, and sadly, she passed away right before Christmas a few years back. She and my late grandfather, Buck, are the namesake for this little doodle-venture of mine, and I often think about how much they would have loved the little characters I create. I know they would have been so proud.
But, aside from being a little glimpse into a time long ago, with their cool vintage dresses and hairstyles, and the grainy black and white image, this photograph holds an amazing coincidence.
I remember my grandma telling me the story of when this photo was taken. One day in 1955 when she was about 16 years old, she and her two girlfriends went for a long walk. After venturing pretty far from home they decided to hitch a ride back with a guy passing by. He said he had to stop to pick up a few things first and they said it was fine, but he took so long in the store that my grandma and her friends started to get antsy.
They decided they would rather walk themselves all the way back home than wait for this guy. Before hopping out of the car, however, and being the nosey, mischievous girl my grandma was, they went snooping in the guy's glove compartment and came across a camera. They took it with them, as a reward for their trouble.
As they walked the long trip home they got tired and decided to stop for a rest in someone's front yard. They were sitting in the grass, enjoying the break, when a person started passing them on the sidewalk. They had them take their photo as they rested-- the photo above.
So what's so "amazing" about this photo of my grandma, aside from the silly story about teenage rebellion and petty theft?
Well, the white house on the right in the background is the same house that, years later in the early 1980's, my parents would buy as their first married home. It is the house I grew up in. The house that my parents still live in.
The house directly behind the girls, with a bit of the porch showing, is the home my dad would buy even later (in the 2000's) and completely renovate. He turned it into a two-family duplex where currently my Aunt Rose (Libby's daughter) lives on the second floor, and me, Kyle, and the pups, live on the first floor.
It is a beautiful combination of memories and serendipity.
A trip into the past to see how my grandmother looked long before she was married. Before my mother was even a thought in her mind.
A story of how she was in her youth-- free-spirited and ballsy.
A look at how the houses we've called "home" for over 28 years looked long before we ever walked this earth. How they somehow manage to look exactly the same and totally different all at once.
A little piece of evidence that perhaps all things do happen for a reason. That nothing is an accident. That everywhere we go, and everything we do, will inevitably be linked to our future, no matter how small and seemingly insignificant.