September 24, 2005
Memoir writing
I began my memoir writing course this week, and am thoroughly enjoying it. Because I have become the official 'keeper' of the oral and physical history of my family, I have long been interested in the idea of putting it together in a format that all could benefit from.

I have been intimidated though. Not confident enough in my writing skills, and overwhelmed by the thought of how to write it, where to start, what to say. My end goal isn't to make something publish worthy, but just something to give to the family members. It's their history too.

The first assignment is a stream of consciousness based on a single item. I chose my grandmother's ring. I wear it on my 3rd finger of my right hand.

Sometimes it’s heavy on my hand, and sometimes it I don’t feel it at all, but I never forget it’s there.

The ring that graces my right hand was placed on my grandmother’s left hand when she married in 1922. The night of their marriage was so full of apprehension and yet such promise. Her new husband had great visions for them. They knew their life in their Ireland was over. The civil war that tore apart their families gave them no choice but to leave immediately.

He had scraped together enough money for a plain gold band. There was no Catholic service. There was no time for Banns. Not even enough time to have the family gather. Only enough to see the priest and flip the coin that would decide their fate.

He looked at her with the sixpence in his hand. Head, Canada and Tails, Australia, my love?” Both boats were in port and ready to sail to their new home.

She was 20. She only had heard tale of the wildness that was Canada and she knew that whatever happened, she would never see her family again. But she loved him. And she knew that as long as she was by his side, it would be fine.

80 years later, the ring now rests on my hand. Given to me by my mother, when I could appreciate it with the honour it deserved.

I feel Nan’s presence through that ring. It guides me. Her courage, her strength, and her grace in the face of sheer adversity moves me in a way that nothing else could.

Vancouver, British Columbia
A patriotic Canadian full of visions of a better Canada, random thoughts and a lot of hot air. Who am I? A struggling writer and photographer, who looks forward to a better Canada. I read. A lot. I learn. A lot. I push myself. A lot. The world is a small place, and getting smaller every day. I'm proud to have friends in every corner of the earth, and abide by the old adage that there are no strangers, only friends we haven't met yet.
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Turning thirty and a half
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