WE WERE NOT ALWAYS OLD !
This photograph I recently found shows my sister Aukje Smid with her charming young husband Marten Heida a long time ago. Today, the 5th of April Aukje would have been 86 years old, just as old as I am, because we were only eleven months apart.
When we were very young, living in Hijum Fryslan, which we left for Oosterzee, also Fryslan, in the summer of 1940 or '41, Aukje would tease me by saying
"I am just as old as you" after her birthday, but before mine the 30th, and she was right of course, but at my birthday the national flag would fly from the 870 year old church of Hijum, which it would do for only my birthday on April the 30th, and a little for princess Juliana.
Ah, where has the time gone now that even our children are grandparents.
Aukje loved two things more than anything (besides her family of course) singing and swimming, and perhaps driving a car, but sing she did already as a schoolgirl during the second world war in Oosterzee.
She used to sing about a the prodigal son out of the bible who returns home from a foreign country after squandering his inheritance and winding up eating the slop of pigs. The story as told by heit (father) was beautifully repeated and portrayed by Aukje's singing, reaching the summit when the son, returning home, meets his father and says - father forgive me, and the father takes him in his arms. Then even the angels cheer and shout of joy.
Aukje shouts that joy at the top of her beautiful voice while she carries the dishes to the kitchen and of course the greatest accident possible happens, she trips and falls, breaking all dishes.
The very last ones in the house.
Nobody dares to make sound, only Aukje's tiny terrified voice is heard when she whimpers, I couldn't help it. Nobody could help it, it was an accident, not even God could help, because dishes were nowhere available at the end of the war.
Would we have to eat all from the potato pan like pigs around the trough? How often had we sang as children Maar de Heer zal uitkomst geven, but the Lord shall give outcome, help.
We did not even think about the possibility, besides Heit had read the bible already and said a thanksgiving prayer after that as well, our tummies were about to explode with the food just consumed, and we usual yelled right after Heit's amen, 'first' to run to the outhouse, except brother Frank, who yelled 'second'!, he was then already the smartest, as second he only had to wait one turn.
"There is someone at the door," said Aukje who just came in the living room. Mother walked to the door. The door, because our little house had only one outside door. it took a while before she came back, and when she did she looked very strange, and nearly choked when she asked heit "Hendrik you better come with me. "
Both left, and only than we felt our need to race to the outhouse again, when Frank was second.
When a little later our parents returned they carried a few boxes with them. Filled with dishes! No, not from God, or was it?
The dishes were given by our neighbor Age Rommerts, a retired fisherman who gave us once a year, when he was allowed to fish the Gieterse vaart with nets, fried fish because no one could fry fish like him. That was always feast. The dishes were given to them on their 50th wedding anniversary.
Age Rommerts did not even go to church.
God sure works his wonders to perform in strange ways.
This short memorial is for my sister Aukje Heida Smid, who would've been 86 years old today had she still lived.
Congratulation to the entire family.