It’s a small world after all
Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 11/06/2021 (727 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Today I heard a radio personality use alternative ‘p-words’ when referring to the pandemic. Things are scary enough these days without always hearing that word. So, when I refer to this ‘picnic’, ‘party’ or ‘pickle’, you will know what I mean.
The entire planet is experiencing variations of this pickle and engaging on social media big time. You may have heard the saying that there are six degrees of separation between people all over the world but when it comes to Winnipeg and Manitoba, it’s more like one or zero degrees.
My story begins with the birth of our eldest daughter, and the thoughtful gift of a homemade, quilted baby blanket. She loved the pastel animal design and cuddled for years with her favourite covering. It was a cherished gift and I thought that was that.
Flash forward almost 30 years, and my husband was chatting with the gentleman who, along with his late wife, had gifted the blanket. Amid their conversation about family, my husband mentioned that my father had emigrated from Kingston, Jamaica 65 years earlier, before going to school in Toronto and eventually marrying and raising a family in Winnipeg.
Upon hearing this, the gentleman shared his family’s military history, whereby his grandfather’s regiment and that of his late wife’s father, the Winnipeg Grenadiers Royal Canadian Infantry Corps, had actually trained in Kingston, Jamaica between 1939 and 1941. The weather there prepared them for combat in tropical climates.
It gets even more interesting. When I mentioned this coincidence to my father, he told me that my Granny, who had been a nurse, had also volunteered at the Kingston Diner, the military canteen on the base where the Grenadiers trained before they were dispatched to fight in Hong Kong.
To sum things up, there is a very good chance that my Jamaican grandmother chatted with or served food to the father and grandfather-in-law of this lovely woman who made the baby blanket for our daughter, Granny’s future great grand-daughter in Winnipeg. Funny how life comes around full circle.
When you chat with strangers, bring up obscure references, mention names of friends and groups you’ve belonged to. I think you’ll find that the world is not so big, and a friendly voice is only a phone call away. Take care all.
Wanda Prychitko is a community correspondent for St. James-Assiniboia. Contact email@example.com
St. James-Assiniboia community correspondent
Wanda Prychitko is a community correspondent for St. James-Assiniboia.