Our world is different today. We email, we text, we tweet. Families live miles apart and no longer congregate regularly around the dining room table.
The Ripple Foundation offers a variety of programs throughout the year. Most of these take place over the fall and winter when I am not here. But I have attended Elder Speak for the past three years.
Four individuals are chosen each year to prepare for this event. They speak of their childhood, their careers, their marriages, their losses and their life experiences.
Yesterday the discussion centered around such topics as relationships and courage. The ideas of living, loving and learning were stressed.
A quote by Everett Berts, one of the Elders, jumped out at me. “There is a difference between knowledge and wisdom.”
Thank you to the Ripple Foundation for sponsoring this event. And thank you to the Elders for sharing their valuable life lessons.
There is an age old controversy about defining family as blood relatives only. But it has been my experience that family are the people you feel closest to, the people who are there for us and who give special meaning to our lives, even though these people are not blood relatives.
When I first came to Culiacán almost nine years ago, I did not know a soul in Mexico. I met Juan and Lucila and they became much more than just friends. They became my family. At the time they had only one child. Juan Carlos was just over one year old.
The family has grown over the years and their four sons are my nietos, my grandsons. They call me abuelita, grandma. And I cannot imagine life without them. We haven’t lived in the same city for the past eight years, and Mexico is a large country geographically. But in the six months I spend in Mexico each year, I do try to see them as often as possible.
I’m delighted that my grandsons are learning English at school. I bring them back English books and activity books when I return from my time up north. But my Spanish definitely gets a workout when I am with them.
The photo in this post was taken when the baby was less than two months old when I was last in Culiacan in April. I wish I could visit more often. It’s tough being a long distance grandma.