Have You Gone, Jimmy Dean?
IN MY OPINION
Books Read in 2008
|THE 'GOOD' PEOPLE
19 April 2008
My sister-in-law sometimes reads this journal, sometimes does not. If she reads this entry, it's probably going to embarrass the heck out of her, but I'm going to write it anyway. So, Alice Nan, if you're reading...sorry, but my heart is very full and I have to talk about it.
I thought a lot about Alice Nan after the camera disappeared. No matter what the outcome of this whole thing is (no, it has not been found), the reaction of each of us was the reason why I wanted to write this entry.
After we had gone over all the possibilities, remembered when we had last seen it, I remembered that I'd made the decision to take it with me to the dining room, and I was certain that wherever the camera and I parted company it was in the dining room.
It's a lovely dining room and there are lots of servers. They can't make a lot of money and when I thought about the crowd that gathered around the rug right by my purse when the tray of dishes and glasses fell over, I was certain that someone had somehow seen and stolen the camera.
I guess I just naturally assume the worst of people.
I wasn't really vocal about my suspicions, but the point is that it never once entered Alice Nan's head that the camera had been stolen. It never seemed to occur to her that someone who found a camera wouldn't turn it in.
And that's the difference between us. She always expects the best of everyone; I don't always.
Alice Nan is such an amazing person. She's one of those people who has never met a person she didn't like. She automatically thinks the best of everyone. I've never met anyone who got along with people so easily (with the possible exception of my mother). She has best friends in their 20s and best friends in their 90s. She gets the most out of everything in her life.
Put Alice Nan in a group of 100 people and at the end of the evening, she will probably have talked with most of them, will remember their names and know lots of things about them. When she talks to you, she gives you 100% of her attention, her eyes staring intently into your own, unwaveringly. She asks questions and genuinely wants to know what you have to tell. This makes her seem at ease in any situation, a quality I so admire.
(Put me in a room with 100 people and I'll find a nice potted palm to hide behind (hi, Ron), hopefully next to the food table so I can pretend to be busy eating and won't have to talk with people. I might even forget the names of people I should know, much less strangers.)
I admire her enthusiasm for everything. Everything to Alice Nan is an adventure of sorts, a journey of discovery, something exciting to learn or to do.
She has been amazingly attentive to her mother since Alice has been living in Santa Barbara. Walt and I have been there frequently and I almost never see family members of other residents. Alice Nan drops by to see her mother almost every day. They have their routine. She knows all the caregivers and administrators by name, and a lot of the other residents. She has a smile and a greeting for everyone.
We don't often tell the people in our lives what they mean to us. I don't know that I've ever told Alice Nan what I think of her, but I am so fortunate to have her as a sister-in-law. If I could emulate one tenth of her attitude about life, I'd be such a better person!
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Great Aunt Alice Nan
MILES TO NOWHERE:
This is entry #2945