Friday, February 09, 2007

Never be in a hurry with bad news. This was a mantra my father often used.

My mother told me this story.

At the time she and my father were living with Dad's parents at 28 W. Chestnut Street in Walla Walla.

My mother was quite concerned about her mother who had been suffering from a lingering illnesss for several years but had recently begun to decline. In fact
she and my father were packed to travel to Portland in the morning.

In the middle of the night all were awakened by the phone ringing. Grandfather came to my parents room and said that he was sure they had been wakened by the jangling of the phone and as long as they were awake they should be on their way. In those days before the construction of the water level highway through the Columbia Gorge,
it was not unusual to spend ten hours completing a journey that now can be traveled in about four.

On arrival at her sister's house in Portland where a number of members of her family were gathered my mother was very upbeat. She announced that after dropping off the luggage she was going directly to the hospital. Surely her visit would have a positive effect on her mother.

But mother died last night. Didn't you get the call?