July 30, 2008 – It is not serendipity or kismet and almost unbelievable. Imagine if you will, my stepfather at a wedding this past weekend. He is talking to the wife of a cousin of my aunt (who married into the family, not direct bloodline). My stepfather is talking about my shop because this woman is heading to Halifax. The conversation went something like this:
“Where in Halifax is the shop?”
“Oh I grew up on that street – where exactly?”
“The northern part, just below the Citadel, where the streets make a triangle”
“That was my section of the street.”
“Really? Hmmm. Her shop is located at 1539 Birmingham.”
(Dramatic pause with a bit of shaking) “That was my house. That is the house I was born and grew up in.”
This woman just stopped by the shop and we met for the first time. I gave her a tour. She gave me a tour. It was so wild. The fireplaces, that every customer comments on, are where she and the family sat for warmth – the family hearth. She talked about where Christmas trees were placed, her grandfather’s chair “spot”, and the earthen cellar (no longer earthen). My “backdoor” neighbour, SweetPea Boutique, on Queen Street, was her Nan’s house and the two houses shared a backyard. The house was in her family from approximately 1948-78. And while the ownership hasn’t necessarily come full circle, it is extraordinary that it has indirectly come back to someone in the family. And when I sweep along the fireplace and stir up the bits of black dust, I will no longer grumble. Instead I will think of this family who is connected to my family.
Today, this space, became a bit more my own.