Saturday, May 9, 2009

Am I Getting Lazy, Sick, or Just Old?

It seemed to be a busy week and I feel so tired. I just want a whole day to spend alone without having to go anywhere. But in looking back, it was a good week. I think the thing that is affecting me is my grandparents. I went in twice this week to help Grandma with eating and other needs and it's so sad and emotionally wearing. She's 92 and when she tells you she wishes she would die it breaks your heart. More on that another time.
My parents had visitors this week from Vienna, Austria. Mom and Dad lived there for five years before my Dad retired back here in PA. Hans and Michelle were in the U.S.A. to visit their son who is attending Temple University in Philadelphia and so being so close to Mom and Dad (4 hours west of Philadelphia) they came to visit and expand their view of Pennsylvania. Bob and I also had met Hans and Michelle and their son, Mathias, about twelve years ago when we were visiting Mom and Dad in Vienna. They are a wonderful family and speak German, French and English fluently, along with a little bit of Italian and some others. I don't know how they do it.

Mathias thinks of "Groundhog Day", the movie, when he thinks of PA. He and his friends in Austria have rented this movie and watched it over and over. When we told him that we only lived 25 minutes from Punxsutawney he was so excited. So Thursday morning, off we went, six of us crammed into my parents' Jeep Cherokee, (probably not legal) for a sight seeing tour of Western Pennsylvania.

Mathias and his parents totally enjoyed Punxsutawney. We saw the real Punxy Phil groundhog behind his glass front den. Punxy also has groundhog painted statues all over town and then a souvenir shop. They took dozens of pictures. It's amazing what we take for granted since we live here and it was so much fun to see it through new and excited eyes.


Our tour continued about 20 more miles south into Amish country of Western PA. Through hills and back country into Smicksburg. Again, we just don't realize that Austrian's have only ever read about and seen movies about Amish and they just couldn't believe that these people are real and actually live the way they do. Amish are a quite interesting study. Why would people today choose no electric, no indoor bathrooms, no cars, etc. is very hard to imagine. When you drive through this community you feel as though you have just been transported back in time about 100 years. You become the out of place entity in your car and strange clothes. We tried to get several pictures for our Austrian friends, but Amish do not like their picture taken, so it makes it a little difficult. We managed some.

This is a little boy and his mother in front of their house. By the way, all their houses are white with white plain cotton curtains pulled back in every window. You can always spot an Amish house. There is a little something serene and cozy about this.

You have to drive very slow and be very careful on the back roads along with the horse and buggys. They have the right of way. Of course, the roads are very scuffed up from the horse shoes and lots of horse poo.

Here is a little school house that is now an antiques shop. Many of the Amish do have gift shops that cater to the curious.
After stopping to eat and browsing some shops we headed back. And thanks to our Austrian friends I have a new appreciation for how beautiful and interesting Western Pennsylvania is. And I'm glad Mathias saw another side of PA. His only view until Thursday was of Philadelphia. That's a wonderful historic city, but very busy, loud, crime, dirty and lots of people. As is the case in certain parts of any big city. But I'm glad they saw another view.
The next morning our friends headed off for New York City, where they will depart from on Sunday to return to Austria. They certainly will have a well rounded picture of the United States in just a few days.
I went back in to help Grandma yesterday. She is just so frail and helpless and she can only talk in a whisper. After coming home from caring for my grandmother, I had my grandchildren for the evening. Talk about extremes, but yet require just as much care. They are busy and noisy. Thank goodness they are normal boys. After dinner, bath and a movie, their mother picked them up about 10:00. I was just exhausted. I don't like being so tired. I probably need to ramp up my exercise program and eat better. I need to stay energized and healthy in order to take care of my family. More sleep would be nice and helpful, too.

We just found out yesterday morning that my great aunt just died at age 93. She was my grandparents' sister-in-law. The viewing was this morning from 10-11, here in town. I should have gone and feel guilty that I didn't, but I just couldn't make it. This afternoon we have a wedding to go to in Pittsburgh. They are very good friends of ours, the first marriage for them both and they are 40 years old. So, time to get moving again and get cleaned up and dressed up. That takes a lot longer than it used to.
Tomorrow's Mother's Day and a perfect day for me would be peace and quiet. The bad news is, I have way too many friends and family in this town. The good news is, I have so many friends and family in this town!
Happy Mother's Day to all of you that nurture.



3 comments:

Grandma J said...

It sounds like you are enjoying so many people and places! That's good. Getting worn out is good too! I have days that I feel like I'm gonna drop, but then I consider the alternative.

Happy Mother's Day!

MzzLily said...

I sure hope you have photos of the five-generations together! I have a picture of my Gramma, Mom, me, my daughter and my oldest granddaughter together. I treasure it. Gramma used to ask me all the time to take her to heaven. (She died at 100 & 1 month). I told her someone would be along for her when it was time.

charmine said...

I have been out of sight lately but i'm back and glad to catch up with my blogger friends.You do too much so rest up.loved this post,have heard of the Ammish folks and would like to see them up close,maybe one day.they are the sweetest folk around.You have been meme tagged come to my blog and see.stay tuned.

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