Sunday 26 June 2011

Double Fisting Bologna

"Go! Go! Go!" cried the toddler as she double fisted bologna at the Germania Club in Hamilton.  My niece Cassandra, my sister's second-born, used to run to keep up with her sister, Amanda.  She was the fearless one, the risk taker of the family.  As she grew, she used to come to my house for sleepovers with her sister.  I remember Cassandra telling us a joke she made up at 7 years old:  "What do you call a girl standing on a cat?  --  A statue."  We have a photo of her sitting in a rocking chair on the porch of the Bell Homestead on the banks of the Grand River where we took her one summer.  I also recall her reasoning when Rob and I adopted our infant son and had to wait 3 weeks during which his birthparents could have changed their minds:  "Why don't Aunty Linda and Uncle Rob just take him to Grandma and Grandpa's house in Grand Bend (and hide out) until the 3 weeks are over?"  She desperately wanted a new cousin.  I also remember Cassandra getting her first pair of glasses at about 12 and my Mom calling her "Marion the Librarian"; I think they were more for fashion than for her eyes.  I enjoyed sitting in an old Anglican Church in downtown Hamilton and listening to Cassandra's beautiful voice during her years in the Hamilton Children's Choir.   She also took up sewing, inspired largely by her Nona, an immigrant from Italy during the 1950's.  During high school, Cassandra got involved with theatre.  She also went on a couple of mission trips, one to Eastern Europe and one to the U.S., with her church.  She graduated from high school with high marks, earning many awards.  This summer she is working as a seamstress at the Huron Country Playhouse in Grand Bend, the very place her mother worked as an usher back in the 1970's.  In the Fall, Cassandra heads to London's Fanshawe College to put her skills to good use in the fashion arts program.  The 2-year-old toddler who double-fisted bologna is now a 20-year-old woman.  Happy Birthday, Cassandra!

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