Boston sometime in the early 40's

I have this wonderful, smart, caring, wise, intelligent, sharp, woman in my life. I call her on a regular basis. I tell her about my life, about school, work, and SOMA . I ask her about her days, long days now. Life has changed for her in the past months. Sometimes the conversations are short, she's tired, or she's headed out, but sometimes - sometimes when I've asked the right questions, and she's up for it I'm treated to a bit of the past.

I forget now what brought the topic up - I might have asked her about how she met my Grandfather, or dates she found especially memorable, or I might have shared a song with her that I especially liked.

How it started I don't remember - now that I think about it, it must have in person not over the phone. In person because Ravel's Bolero started out low and quite in the background.

So here I was sitting on a twenty year old couch that has somehow managed to stay as hard and uncomfortable as the day it was brought home. Sitting in a room that was 15 degrees warmer than I would prefer, riveted as I listened to her tale.

I'm a romantic, or so I've been told, and I think more guys are romantics than the sex as a whole would like to admit.

I don't know much about my Grandmothers life, I don't know all the details - she's 92 so that means that she would have been about 25 ~ 26ish at the time. I know that she had vivid red hair, the ghost of which you can see even today. Her story was not along one, maybe lasting three to four minutes, just a statement of facts. My mind has filled in the rest.

She told me that one of the most memorable, most enjoyable dates that she had ever been on was with a man who was not my Grandfather. I don't know who he was, but he sounds like a gentleman of good taste whoever he was.

My Grandmother was living Boston at the time - I'm not sure doing what - I think it had something to do with the war effort - but that is not what this is about - she was in Boston, and she went on a date that she still remembers 70 years later.

During the course of the evening, which as best as I can tell was a walk around Boston - they passes by the Boston Symphony Orchestra. They sat outside and talked and listened. Then this song, Ravel's Bolero started - started out very quite, I'm sure that you could not have heard it outside at first - it must have creeped into their conversation. Slowly, filling the evening air, growing louder and louder as the song progressed. By the end of the piece if I remember the story right - my Grandmother and this young man were dancing together. Dancing in the streets of Boston, outside the Boston Symphony Hall, as the sound filled the street. I can see it in my head, all in black and white. Wet pavement and street lights, and music and danging

Listen to something tonight, something that you've never listened to before. Listen and realize that it has made countless numbers of people before you feel as you do. That the human condition, that love and stress, and worry, and bliss, and fear are ancient things, things that are new to me but older than the words I use to describe them.


  1. Awesome bro! You are blessed to have such a Godly Grandma in your life.

  2. Things sure seem like they were more romantic back then. But too, back then men had more courage and women had more grace and both were certain of their roles in the society of the times. Is it even possible to have such romance today?