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My grandfather

My grandfather, Cal, turned 92 last September.  He and my Grandmother lived in their own home, happily and independently.  He was an unstoppable care-giver, and spent much of his time taking care of her and also of other elderly relatives in the family.  I've been close to my grandparents all my life.  They are smart, funny, well-travelled, continually self-educating, and the most generous people I've ever known.

Over the Christmas holidays, my husband and son and I went to stay at their house in Texas.  My son is allergic to cats, of which my parents and step-parent have many, so they offered to host us.  It was a very happy stay.  But on Christmas Eve, in the middle of a large family dinner, my grandfather took a fall in the kitchen.  He broke his leg.  For the rest of our stay he was in the hospital, and we did our best to make sure my grandmother took all her medications and also had some comfort and company at the house.  When we left, just before the New Year, he was moving to a rehab center and my grandma was going to stay with him in his room while he recovered.

On New Year's Day, we spoke on the phone, and he told me how happy he'd been to see us and how proud he was that I had finished my dissertation.  He had encouraged and supported me in many ways throughout the whole research and writing process, and I told him that I'd dedicated the work to him and all my grandparents.

Today is my birthday, and this evening my father called to tell me that my grandfather has died.  It was very sudden - he had been recovering well up to this point - and while the quickness of it was a mercy for him it was a shock to the family, especially my grandmother.  So I'm just writing this tonight because I want to remember him, and my heart is full of love and admiration for the wonderful person he chose to be.  My family told me they were sorry that this happened on my birthday, but to me it means that I will remember him at the turning of my years for the rest of my life, and that's good.

He lived a fascinating life.  He served in the Second World War in the navy's air force, doing repairs and maintenance on the planes.  After the war he used the G.I. Bill to go to college, where he met and fell in love with my grandmother.  He blurted out his proposal of marriage to her one day out of the blue as they were driving in the car.  She said yes.  My grandmother was a life-long Catholic and he a life-long atheist, so they married at her father's house instead of in church.  They were one of the most dedicated and loving couples I've ever seen, and laughed at each other's quirks quite a bit over the years.  He worked in the aerospace industry, and helped design the simulation machines that trained the Apollo astronauts for the first moon missions, as well as contributing to the engineering of the LEM lunar module.

During his long and happy retirement, he and my grandmother travelled all over Europe as part of elder hostels and great books learning programs.  He was very close to all his grandchildren, but I was the eldest of them and he never hesitated to tell me how proud he was of me or to ask how he could help to support me and my family.  His nickname for my son, Alex, was "Alexander the Great."

He was a wonderful man who lived a rich life full of kindness.  It's going to be a very hard time for my grandmother now.  Please send good thoughts their way if you can, and thank you for letting me share some memories of him with you tonight.  I love him so much.

Whew

I passed my dissertation defense.  That's a relief!  <3

I would say, "On to adventure!," but I'm actually most looking forward to sleep :)

The Random List Meme

Spurred on by the example of scfrankles and thesmallhobbit, I decided to try this fun little thing...

The meme:
1. Go to this website: www.random.org/lists/
2. Pick 15 characters from any fandom or whatever you’re into, type them in, then get your randomized list and match to the entries below.
3. Tag five or more people - or, you know, have a go if you fancy it.
4. Have fun!

1. Mom/Dad: Inspector Javert. Oh dear. I see years of therapy in my future. But as a child I would pet his bushy whiskers and hide in his voluminous greatcoat. And as I got older I'd come to appreciate his laconic & deadpan sarcasm.

2. Your Sibling: Kira Nerys. ROCK ON. Best sibling ever, though hopefully we are not reliving Kira's actual childhood, because I would suck at being a resistance fighter.

3. Grandparent: Donnatella Moss. Thank goodness! With Javert as a father I think I'd need someone to spoil me and make me laugh! Her idealism would be breezy and gentle in comparison to my Dad's Justice Hurricane :)

4. Haunts You: Gandalf. YAAAASSSS, HAUNT ME, GANDALF! Fill my dark and stormy nights with fireworks, be the bushy-browed monster under my bed. And when I'm actually scared or lonely, tell me about the sun rising over the sea in the Undying Lands.

5. Boyfriend/Girlfriend: Ellen Ripley. Dude, I am golden. There is nothing left in this world that can hurt me, I am defended by unlimited badassery on literally every side. I'll just let her and Kira take care of the Cardassians while I hang out with Grandma.

6. Your Ex: John Watson. I literally cannot imagine ever breaking up with him, so it must have been his choice. Bless his heart, he must have encountered a remarkable consulting detective and realized that he wasn't meant for the quiet life. We're still very good friends.

7. Your Best Friend: Leia Organa Solo. You would think she'd be my sister's best friend, but sometimes these resistance fighters need someone in their lives who reminds them to relax and read something fun every now and then.

8. Proposed to You: Martha Jones. I love her dearly, but she's been in love with three people in the brief time I've known her and engaged to at least two of them, so she needs a breather. Sometimes it's good to take a break from relationships and just let yourself be, and that's what we do together.

9. Your Boss: Charles Xavier. He'd be a wonderful boss. Oh, this is great, I can teach at the School for Gifted Youngsters. Plus my girlfriend could probably beat up Wolverine, so my street cred with the kids will be sky high.

10. Random Person Met at a Bar: Methos. Wow. Truer words were never spoken. The bar is Joe's, naturally. He spends the evening telling me scandalous falsehoods about Herodotus and Thucydides.

11. Your Rival: Illya Kuryakin. Well, no matter what we are competing over, he will clearly win. I'll try to be a good sport about it.

12. Gave You Your First Kiss: Elizabeth Bennett. We were great school chums.

13. Drunk and Singing Karaoke With: Havelock Vetinari. Dear. God. What is he planning?

14. Played 7 Minutes in Heaven With: Lee Adama. Well, being my ace self that wouldn't work out too well, but DAMN. How about I just stroke his arms for seven minutes while he earnestly tells me about the meaning of democracy? He's probably just hoping I'll get him an internship with Grandma, but I can leverage that.

15. Gave You Your Favourite Dessert: Buster Keaton. Yes, he gave me that pie right in the face, though he protested eloquently with his eyes so that I would know such predictable slapstick was beneath him.


*cackles* If anyone else would like to do this meme, I'd love to read how yours turn out! :)

Works in Progress

I've seen a number of memes going around lately encouraging writers to post snippets of their works in progress. Unfortunately I have real life writing that cannot wait, and so I don't think I'll be able to do much on my two WIPs until midsummer at the earliest. But to cheer myself, I will do a variation of this meme anyway and share a bit of upcoming stuff for my Potterlock series, "A Blaze Not Silver," and my Doctor Who fusion, "A Creature of the Abstract."

1) From the Potterlock series, here is an upcoming Mycroft monologue (his audience for this is John):

Mycroft, Dumbledore, and MirrorsCollapse )


2) And in the Doctor Who fusion, this is WeepingAngel!Sherlock arguing with John over whether or not Weeping Angels are murderers. (It's all dialogue at the moment, apologies, that's very much the way I roll in the first stage of WIPs).

Weeping Angel Tortures A MetaphorCollapse )

***

Thanks for indulging me, friends! I'd love to hear about what you are working on, if you'd like to share <3
Well, I wasn't able to actually post this to the watsons-woes' comm -- my posts are being temporarily blocked due to what I assume is a technical snafu -- so, hey, I'll just post it here instead for the moment :) Today's prompt was "Doors and/or Windows." Happy WADVENT!! (a.k.a. the Watson Advent festivity)

Title: To Be 221B
Author: rachelindeed
Rating: G
Universe: multiverse
Characters: 221B
Relationship/Pairing: none
Summary: 221B is made up of more than doors and windows.
Content Warnings: none
Wordcount: 64 words
Author's note: Thanks to the Sherlock 60 comm for the regular poetic inspiration. This short piece references three famous poems, but despite having borrowed a few phrases, I am not Shakespeare, Alfred Lord Tennyson, or even Vincent Starrett :)

To Be 221B...Collapse )

Interview about Sherlock Special

Amanda Abbington did an interview when they were filming the Sherlock Special which has just been released. Only very mildly spoilery, as of course she couldn't tell journalists much about any of the details, but ...the mildly spoilery stuff is belowCollapse )

I am SO HAPPY to hear this. *does the dance of joy*

Ahem. Thank you for indulging me :)

EDITING TO ADD: Oh, P.S., the thing under the mildly spoilery cut is just news that I think is a bit nice about what general approach they are taking to Mary in the special, but I know that a lot of people have different feelings about what they want to see with her character, and I wouldn't want to trick anyone into clicking on something that will make them sad instead of happy. So, if nice-Mary-thing is not your cup of tea, I thought I should just flag that here! Hugs to everyone :)

tumblr

I have at long last signed up for tumblr. If anyone would like to say hello, my user name over there is educatedinyellow :)

Sherlock Special Trailer

I just saw it, and I really enjoyed it! I'm hopeful that this will be a fun thing :) Personally, I am no longer invested in the main storyline of the series and I almost exclusively read AUs in the world of fic, so the fact that the Powers That Be are handing me an actual real official AU where I can have these characters and these actors unburdened by the previous plot feels like an amazing gift. Plus, it was the Victorian era Holmes and Watson that I fell in love with at the age of ten, so I'm stoked to see a more ACD-ish version of the show. My only concern is: I hope they will settle into the characters and play them sincerely and with the same nuance that they bring to the modernized roles, rather than doing more of a semi-parody in which they don't act like 19th century men (which is how I felt the first trailer played). So this more serious trailer was much more up my street, and the production values looked gorgeous. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that this will be a delightful Christmas holiday vacation back into the things I love about Holmesiana <3 <3

Hamilton The Musical

Have you all heard this soundtrack yet? I listened for free through Amazon Prime, and I thought it was terrific! Would love to chat about it if there are any fellow fans around :)

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