Today could be an emotionally challenging day.
I'm very conscious of the fact that today is April 1. There are two significant memories connected to this day for me. Both had to do with my paternal grandparents. None of these memories have anything to do with April fool's day.
April 1 was my paternal grandfather's birthday. I find it ironic that his birthday should fall on April fool's day because the man had absolutely no sense of humour. If there were a "Grumpy Old Men" reality show, he could have had a starring role.
In 1988 I introduced my paternal grandmother to her first grandchild - my daughter Lora. We had traveled to Germany, specifically so that my grandparents could see our first child. April 1, 1988 fell on Good Friday. We got dressed in our Sunday best and took my grandmother to a cemetery in Hanover where we went to the Peters' family plot. At that time my grandfather and his brother Willi were the only ones buried there. (The population has increased since then). Afterwards we went back to my aunt's apartment for lunch, at the conclusion of which my grandmother asked me to lead us in a communion service. Serving my grandmother, Berta Peters, communion on that April 1, the day my grandfather would have turned 89 and only one and a half months after he died, is a memory that I'll always cherish. It was also the last time I saw my grandmother before she died.
Today, April 1, 2012 will be another significant day. We are having a farewell dinner for Lora. She is leaving for South Africa tomorrow and will be away for at least five months. She's scheduled to return home at the end of August, but has warned me that she might stay longer depending on how things turn out.We'll see what happens.
Another April 1 to remember.
"The first of April is the day we remember
what we are the other 364 days of the year."