Life, Family and Grapefruit

Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family.  Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.  ~Jane Howard


There are few times in our life where we have a chance to disconnect from the world and really spend quality time with the people we love. Normally we are sitting around our dinner tables or living rooms with the tv on, our lap tops open and a cell phone attached to the palm of our hands. We spend more time connecting with people virtually and less time in conversation and discussion of what’s really going on in our world today.

Last week gave me an opportunity to spend five days with two people who could care less with what is happening on Facebook or how your twitter klout could become beneficial for you in the future; my Yia yia and Papou (Greek for grandma and grandpa). I traveled to Arizona to live the retired life with them and in the process I learned a thing or two.

Every morning I would wake up to a fresh grapefruit waiting for me on the kitchen table and this was the start of my daily education. My Papou would soon join me at the table while Yia Yia milled around the apartment and he would begin to talk about what was going on in the world. He covered topics from the civil unrest in Libya and Egypt to the pending NFL lock out… They seemed to have knowledge about everything happening in the world. We talked about the importance of family and the excitement they both felt for my unborn child. I heard stories from his time in WWII and found out how much of an athlete my Yia Yia had been at Ohio State… all of these lessons and tidbits I may never had learned had I decided to bury my head in my phone to watch the changing twitter stream or Facebook news feed. Instead I spent that time learning about our family and the lives of the people who started it all.

The time I got to spend with my grandparents really taught me the value of family and how important it is to have a break from the chaotic hustle and bustle of the everyday work place. It’s easy to get caught up with the constant connectivity that we all deal with in our lives. Taking the time to appreciate your loved ones not only gives you insight into the extraordinary lives that they may have led and also helps center you around what’s truly important. Enjoy your clan, network, tribe or family and remember that you will always need them.

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One response to “Life, Family and Grapefruit

  • Mike

    Grandparents are NOT to be taken for granted. Miss mine terribly, but you’re right the stories told and lessons learned get you through. Very well written cousin, Yia-Yia and Papou are one of a kind!

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