I should have taken some pics. Why didn't I? ADD! Such a good time. And, let's put Rose in this picture. I'm coming back from Oakland Airport after dropping my son in law and Rachael and Grandkids off on their way to Denver. I'm in his monstrous SUV. The concept of getting a parking place in North Beach is almost beyond the pale. Without a doubt, it is the worst. Indescribable is more like it. I use to be amazed when I would pick up Rose for treatment. I never parked as I pulled in front of a garage at her place. And, to find a parking place on a Sunday, forget it.
At best I figured I'd have to park blocks away, maybe a mile or so in a garage. A couple of miles from Rose's house, I started looking. Suddenly, a smile and laugh followed as I thought about the many times Rose and I had laughed about her parking karma. I can't tell you the number of times that as we would get close to Mount Zion, Rose would say, "OK, I've got my parking karma ready." It worked. I was often blown away. Sometimes we would get right at the hospital, some car would leave a space as though they were holding it for us. OK, Rose, I need the parking Karma here. I turn down Taylor Street toward Rose's house. Cars were stuffed in every crook and crannie as us southerners say. You couldn't fit a bike in a space. Come on Rose, parking karma, I am saying. I pass Rose's house, stop at the stop sign. Look to right, then left, decide to go up gigantic hill where they have some angle parking because only the brave attempt this. I turn and there before my very eyes is a parking spot that you could put a tank in. It is a little disguised as there are doors but not garages which would make it illegal but you have to be looking for it. I am amazed. I park easily. Walk around to make sure it is Ok.HooAhhhh, Rose, you have done it again.
The meal is so great. Amachi, which I'm taking to call Rose's Mom, which is a term of endearment, is a great cook. We have a wonderful Basque meal, fabulous is truly the word: Mary Ellen and son Nicolas, a precocious six year old, have joined us and Mary Ellen attest to the fact that this great meal is common asAmachi is truly a great cook.
I really enjoyed talking to Rose's Dad. Atachi is grandpa, I think. He was raised in French Basque country and does not think too highly of the French. He was 8 when WW ll started but remembers it all. And, he says with not a little emphasis that the French collaborators were the worst for informing on the Resistance. You could literally see the far away look in his eyes as he remembers. After the war, he was sent away to learn cabinet making. He remembers living in these barracks that had been built originally for German soldiers. No heat, no amenities. Reminded me of the foreign movie, The Counterfeiters. He came to America in the fifties and worked in Oakland and then in San Francisco, down on Market street. In those days, there were cabinet shops everywhere.
Rose was named after her father's sister , Mary and after her Mom's sister, Rosario--Thus we have our Rosemary. A great afternoon. The missing was the physical presence of Rose but not really. Her spirit was much present. Do I believe that? Absolutely.
Below is the cover of a book about the Basque. I don't know much and want to learn. Already, I've found out they are tremendously supportive of each other. The entire North Beach contingent was at Rose's Memorial.