When my mother studied at university, she met Carol and they became great friends. They travelled Europe together in 956. Amazing eh? After they had married and had children, the two couples decided to buy property on a lake upon north. Carol's sister summered at that lake for many years. Both families stayed with Flora to get to know the lake.
A couple of years later, the families bought a large plot of land which they divided into two. They built similar cottages and would spend every summer and many winters there. Both families became close and many happy memories ensued.
But my greatest memories deal with Flora. We met in 1974 and we have been friends ever since. I would escape my parents and go visit her. She always enjoyed company even from a kid like myself. I would help her bake and I remember one wonderful Tomato Cake that was delicious.
Through the years, I made a point of spending time with Flora. I would paddle my canoe over to her place and spend a wonderful afternoon with her. We would talk of many things. She is a very interesting woman. Her alcoholic husband left her with four young children whom she supported as a guidance counsellor at an esteemed high school. She has also travelled the world.
Even though Flora is old enough to be my grandmother, I thought of her as a best friend and a confidant. I could talk with her about anything. Nothing was out of bounds. I told her things I would never tell anyone else. I felt so lucky and honoured to have a friend like her.
Recently, Flora's daughter moved her into a nursing home in Guelph which is an easy 40 minute drive from me. Finally, yesterday, I drove to visit her and it was great to see her looking so well. She is 91 now but still as clever as ever. No brain impairment at all even though her body has slowed down. She is hard of hearing and her legs cause her trouble. Her hip had been operated on and gives her problems yet she still manages to walk.
We all have that person in our lives who you consider a mentor. Flora is mine. She is a brave, intelligent, honest, caring, wonderful woman. I am so lucky to be able to call her my friend.
I have finished my third novel entitled That Truthful Place about ten children who develop telepathy and the course their lives take. I'm self-publishing through Createspace (Amazon) and it will be available soon. I will keep you posted.