I don’t usually like to put out super personal things on the internet, but I had something happen today that I need to share. This morning, I found out that my great aunt (who is 104 and going strong) is in the hospital. I went right away to go see her and spend time with her. I feel so horrible for not spending more time with her and there really is no excuse since I’ve been back home since March.
When I got to the hospital, and found her room, she instantly awoke as I came inside and said hello. She is doing a lot better than I originally thought, and it made my day to sit and talk with her.
On the TV screen in her room, a slideshow of nature pictures was playing. Half Dome in Yosemite popped up and I made a comment about it. I asked her if she had ever been to half dome and she said, “Oh yes.” She started to tell me a story about an adventure she had hiking near Half Dome when she was in her early 20’s. Auntie’s dad, brother (my grandpa), and two of their friends/neighbors were all camping in Yosemite. She knew so many details about the trip and even remembers what she was wearing.
She said they started out late on a hike, and the trail quickly grew dark as the sun went down. From what I understand, the group got separated and her neighbor sprained her ankle… She said a full moon came out and lit up the trail. She and her friend were wearing white blouses which reflected in the moonlight- making it easier for the group to find one another and reunite. Auntie told me, “I’m not a very great hiker”, but I can tell she still enjoyed being outdoors and in nature.
Sitting with her and hearing about her adventures in Yosemite makes me so grateful that I have the opportunity to also enjoy these places. It also makes me wonder if we will reach a point where future generations won’t be able to enjoy natural environments in the same way we do. I do know that we, as a race, are leaving stronger imprints on Earth with each year. My hope and my prayer is that my children’s chidlren’s children and so on will grow up enjoying the great outdoors and places like Yosemite, Yellowstone, and Mt. Diablo….because even if we aren’t the greatest hikers, we still need to appreciate and preserve our world.
I’ll keep you updated on Auntie’s status. My gut tells me she’ll be out of the hospital and back home in no time, but prayers are greatly appreciated.