My grandmother Blanche, whom my sisters and I affectionately called Nana, was a feisty 4’9” lady from Long Island, New York. Born in 1911, she lived through two world wars, the Great Depression, and so much else. In her younger days, she and her husband would go see “the fights”, went to speakeasies, and enjoyed Manhattan cocktails. She raised two children, my uncle and my mom, and never remarried after her husband died in 1951.
When she turned 65, she came to live with my family. Nana was always baking goodies and would give you a hard pinch on the underside of your arm if you failed to greet her as soon as you came home. With one hand perched on her hip and the other wagging a pointed finger in your face, she would scold the offender with, “You didn’t say Hello to me!” When she dressed up, she wore her faux fur coat, a red lip, and her favorite perfume, Red Door. She liked her scents strong, and her perfume would quickly overtake a room and outcompete any other aroma.
I think of Nana often and miss her. My daughter was born just a few months after she passed, but I make sure to tell she all about my Nana and what a special lady she was.