Wow what a day it was, sure people came in rain clothes, but did anybody care of the soft summer shower caressing the happy crowd?
All I heard was happy sounds and laughter. The children had more than a great time finding puddles to stamp their boots in, with an ice cream in the hand on the way to bouncing castles, balloon twisting, face painting, live animals, and all kinds of games, contradicting that today's kids do not play anymore.
I saw young children chasing one another yet staying with the groups they arrived with, petting goats and rabbits, a few found even a small puddle of escaped rainwater in the bouncing castle, providing extra entertainment by bouncing right in it. What an unexpected pleasure.
And then there was Mr Ernie Poignant, a resident of Primrose, who never misses a great event, still drawing a crowd at 98, sketching individual cartoons of people, including mine.
I printed my initials L S on a fresh sheet of paper as he directed and asked what my favorite animal was. The initials became part of the drawing and my favorite animal, a cow, became the subject. Mr. Poignant smudged her nose a bit and after drawing me had me ask in the caption 'what happened to to that snout of yours?' The cow answers 'blame that ol' cartoonist.'
The staff of Menno Place organizing the event did all the hard work like setting up tables and chairs for the visitors, cooking the food and serving it. A fine idea was, I thought, to hold the entire event in the court yard so the patients living in the Home could participate as well.
The only screw-up was mine. Entirely. I had told my daughter that the event started at one,
while the actual starting time was at eleven am. Two of her sons (my grandchildren) with their households participated, even though another family-event in town, having to do with their business, was held at the same time. Love you guys.
At the end of the feast a tall woman on stilts graciously maneuvered among the crowd, I wondered how was she coming down from that height, but at the same time thought how nice it would be to appear on a picture with her, together with the first of the two households whom belatedly arrived, which was not their doing but my inaccurate information.
I own no camera but had just talked to a nice photographer who only a few minutes ago left. Where was she when I so sorely needed her?
But then, the staff member who never fails arrived at the scene with a camera, took the included in this story, thereby saving the day. Thank you Pearl.
I asked the stilted lady how she was going to come down from that lofty height, she graciously bowed her head a little down toward me, as if she was going to share a great secret, but smiling mysteriously said
“I will get down as I went up,” and on her way she went, but not before Pearl took this wonderful shot of the family Dylan and Natasha van Diermen.
If you look close you see a stick ending half ways on my left arm, that is my putter, now a constant companion.
My grandson Dylan is as tall as a beautiful lady I know in Fryslân, and that lady is again as beautiful as the woman on my right.
When my oldest grandson, Mark van Diermen, who sports spotty gray hairs in his beard, arrived with his beautiful wife Laura, together with their beautiful daughter Deah, whose first word as a baby was 'no' and the second 'hockey,' and their son Max, named after his father Mark and after myself Lex.
I felt really bad, but was able to show all of them them our new putting greens, including the secret disappearing act of the golf balls at the fifth hole, only to reappear at the second green, three feet lower, after traveling some twenty feet underground and crossing a busy side walk, which amazed them all.
I have a special bond with all my grandchildren but with Mark an extra special one as he and Laura greatly honored me to officiate their marriage before God, family, and friends.
We were lucky to find the bistro open where we had at least a dry and quiet spot to have something to drink and eat, and touch bases again.
Mark and Laura have still another gorgeous and intelligent daughter Tauny, who supports herself by working full time, and still bagging the highest awards at school.
The two brothers are blessed to work at the same family business together with still another brother Dustin, who owns the successful business with his parents Erwin and Janice van Diermen, which was started by their other grandfather Mr. Art van Diermen, who recently passed away.
He started the business in the 1950's.
Grandparents day 2017 was, in spite of drizzling rain, and misinformation, again a great success, with many looking forward to the next one.