Today at work I started up a conversation with an elderly customer. She was resting her legs, and was glad to talk. She is eighty-one, her last name is Loid (I believe that is the correct way to spell it), and she has lived in the Fayetteville area for a long time. She remembers when my boss was born and teases him about things he did when he was a toddler. This is not something many people can do.
Hearing her talk about the past was amazing; what affected me most was hearing about her husband. He was in the marines, third division, in World War II. He and the rest of his unit, two hundred plus men, fought at Iwo Jima, where only six survived (I'm not sure if she meant survived unwounded or survived, period). He died about five years ago.
I'm sure there are plenty of stories like this, but you don't hear them from these men's wives everyday.
I got paid during the course of the conversation, but I would have payed to have it.
And that's not only because she wished her hair were as curly as mine.
I have lots to say about grandparents and history, but I think I will leave most of it for another time. Let's just say that I would have thoroughly regretted not having the conversation I had today. I will probably never get a chance to hear that lady's wisdom and history again.