My father and his two sisters shared some wonderful characteristics. They delighted in their families, lived with intention, and got a chuckle out of the ordinary pleasures of their days.
Aunt Mary, who was the youngest and longest-lived, passed this morning at 96. I was influenced by her because I admired her spunk and the way she lived. She was a woman who used cloth napkins at each meal, climbed ladders to pick blackberries well into her eighties, read widely, enjoyed a good discussion, stomped her feet when she crossed a footbridge with her grandchildren so that the trolls who lived beneath would be too frightened to come out, swam in the icy waters of Tomales Bay, and had a cheerful word for all the many people who came her way. She was an architect and carried this orientation to design, structure, and optimization into her life. She loved her family, friends, profession, nature, swimming, and all the serendipity that gave her life zing.
Aunt Mary lived with joy and goodwill and will be missed by all of us who had the incredible fortune to know her. This painting is my interpretation of what happened to her as she rode that final wave into the universe this morning.