Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Golden Egg of "Family"

Today started out ordinarily enough. I dressed for my commute to the Library of Congress in dark blue Levi’s Perfectly Slimming 512 boot-cut jeans I bought on sale at Macy’s this week for $13 (!!) and paired them with a new blue and white tie-dyed rayon International Concepts (INC) top that was also on sale. Couldn’t resist when last week’s jeans purchase fit so well (also bought another pair in white).

I accessorized with delicate sapphire and diamond hoop-earrings from Zale's Jewelers that my best friend, Kari, bought me for my birthday (sapphire is my birthstone), a silver-metal filigree watch I found at the Dallas airport, and a couple of blue fashion rings I picked up on a "girls’ weekend getaway" to Las Vegas. This may be a blog about vintage fashion, but there wasn’t a single piece of vintage clothing on me today. That didn’t stop me from going way, way back in time, however.
With my sturdy Studio Paolo high-heeled loafers from JCPenney on my feet, I set out for a routine visit to the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. to do research for my employer of 18 years. The commute and my research were uneventful. But as I returned to my car in the vast parking lot of the subway station for the drive home after work, I came across the most adorable family of Canada geese and goslings you’ve ever seen. As they waddled toward my car, the brood looked like they were searching for a ride home.  A delightful harbinger of spring, it didn’t hurt that the weather was gorgeous, with puffy clouds moving swiftly across a brilliant sky. I took my "goose encounter" as a sign of even more good things to come.

On the drive home from work, I stopped at a retirement village only six miles from my home in Baltimore County, where I was determined to meet a second cousin I hadn’t known until recently was living so close to me. I credit this blog for the discovery!

Apparently, just a few weeks ago, David Plymyer, who is the grandson of my grandmother, Hester’s, brother, Sargent Plymer, was looking into his family roots and googled my grandmother’s name. A post I published about my grandmother last November happened to pop up. Intrigued that he had stumbled upon a relative here in Maryland, David posted a comment on my blog, telling me about his parents and how nearby they lived to me.
Lynell with Jay and Edith Plymyer
I couldn’t resist. I wanted to meet these kin I had no idea were only a few miles away all these years. So I found the retirement village today and knocked on the apartment door of my second cousin, Jay Plymyer, and his darling wife, Edith, who have been married 65 years. Boy were they ever surprised to learn who I was! Jay suffers from Parkinson’s disease, which limits his speech, so Edith filled me in on their branch of the family and caught me up to date on their children and grandchildren. A neighbor in an apartment down the hall snapped this photo of the three of us before I bid them adieu so they could go eat their supper. It was a delightful visit, topped off by my promise to return with a photo album chock full of snapshots of the Plymyer family taken in York, Pennsylvania in the early 1900s (my grandmother was born in 1893), and other fun artifacts I think they will enjoy seeing.

What a fantastic day!

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