Look How Far Memory Lane Can Get You!
Friday, September 23, 2011
The last few weeks, I have had two people on my mind. They were the parents of a good friend from high school. I haven’t seen or heard from the high school friend in 30 years and, for the life of me, I can’t figure out why her parents have crept into my mind so often.
But there it is. I keep finding myself thinking of them and remembering things from the past. My friend’s mother was like a second mother to me for quite a few years. I can remember her teaching me new crochet stitches and tips on sewing (she was a professional seamstress). Her husband played a key role in my obtaining my first ‘real’ job, and to this day, I work for the same employer. Memories of BBQ’s and meals shared with them have infiltrated my thoughts at the most unexpected moments. I can remember instances where my friend and her Mom would come to our house to watch beauty pageants on TV. Small, seemingly unimportant things from the past…
I’ve also been working on my genealogy project on and off and have spent some quiet afternoons exploring cemeteries where ancestors might be found. Anyhow, the other day I decided that I would go to the cemetery where my friend’s parents are laid to rest to ‘visit’ with them and leave a graveside flower. This visit is long overdue – the Mom passed away in 1996 and the Dad in 1978. I remember going to the father’s wake, but I can’t remember the mother’s wake at all. I figured out which cemetery they were located in and decided that it wouldn’t take long to locate the marker, so made a stop after work one afternoon. I quickly decided that this cemetery was much larger than it appeared from the road and spent about 40 minutes cruising up and down the aisles in search of the location. I finally looked at my watch and decided that I would have to call it quits for the day and headed home.
I knew that I had been in the right cemetery, but where to find them. Finally, I decided to check out a local genealogy website that a friend has created. This website lists obit notices and shows photos of cemetery markers. The site is quite extensive and you can search by name and/or by cemetery location. I quickly located my friend’s family and viewed the stone. By looking at the photo I was able to determine pretty much where to locate the stone and decided to go back in the evening. When I returned, I no longer had problems locating the spot and spent a few moments there, remembering old times shared. The stone was in a spot that I had passed over twice earlier that day and I can’t figure out how I could have missed it!
I guess you’re wondering how my trip down memory lane relates to my quest for a healthier lifestyle – so here is what I discovered: Later that evening, while entering my walking minutes for the day, I decided to locate the cemetery on the Spark People mapping program and plot how many steps and miles I had walked. Guess what, during my afternoon search, I had walked 1.6 miles! Mind you I guess you could say stroll instead of walk, but movement and exercise it definitely was. So I guess from now on, when I’m doing a cemetery lookup, either for myself or someone else, I am going to track my exercise minutes. Its amazing where we can find moments of physical activity in our day!