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the girl with violets in her lap [userpic]

August 17th, 2009 (11:48 pm)

Sometimes life is sad and depressing and you really don't feel at looking at the specific real-life things that are making you sad and depressed. So you search for random Julie Andrews videos on YouTube instead. And sometimes, if you are lucky, you find this:

Julie Andrews yodeling with the real-life Maria von Trapp.

Interestingly, I don't think I've ever told the story on LJ of how my grandmother met Maria von Trapp. It's a funny story because Gramma's sort of cagey on the details; she gets that way when you try to draw a story out of her, as opposed to what happens when she's just sort of letting her mind wander in and out of a conversation people are having, in which case she's liable to interrupt at any moment as a story strikes her and tell you about the time she tried to rescue a stranded snapping turtle for a pet when she was a small child and it bit her and all but sucked her finger off, or whatever.* My grandmother is a hell of a storyteller, but only on her terms, and for some reason, I have never been around when it has occurred to her to tell the story of her meeting Maria von Trapp. I heard it secondhand and begged her for the details, but she just smiled and shook her head and said "Oh, yes. I did meet her. What do you want to know?"

And since I do not know exactly what it is I want to know, because if I knew what I wanted to know then I'd already know it and I wouldn't have to ask, I have never been able to get good details. All I have been able to learn is the following:

1. My grandmother met Maria von Trapp when she (Gramma) had a friend visiting at the cottage, a priest who knew the von Trapps and was traveling with them; and
2. A relative of mine, who was a baby at the time and who shall remain nameless, peed on Maria von Trapp while being held in her lap.

Frankly I think my unnamed relative has the best role in this story, but I have never spoken to her about it. "So you peed on Maria von Trapp!" has never felt like a great conversational opener, I don't know why.

Next time I will ask Gramma if she asked Maria von Trapp to yodel with her. And if not: why?

Someday I will figure out the right questions to ask her, and I will get this whole story. I will just have to be as cagey as she. Hm.

*If you couldn't tell: this is perhaps the single thing I love most about my grandmother.


Posted by: lady of the summer, princess of the morning (diana_hawthorne)
Posted at: August 18th, 2009 04:18 am (UTC)
julie andrews: give me my soul again

I absolutely adore that episode of The Julie Andrews Hour! I've watched it several times, each time better than the last :D

Posted by: Underwear Ninja (chavvah)
Posted at: August 18th, 2009 05:14 am (UTC)

My mum talked with Art Garfunkel at a party one time. Which is not exactly the same, but you know. She is equally cagey about it. I get the sense that he tried to pick her up and she wasn't into it, although she is far too modest to ever say as much.

Posted by: Lara (perseph)
Posted at: August 18th, 2009 06:30 am (UTC)

Wait... she was a real person? They were real people? How did I not know this?

Posted by: Pirate Jenny (deliriums_fish)
Posted at: August 18th, 2009 06:33 am (UTC)
julie rainy days

Actually, "So you peed on Maria von Trapp!" sounds like an excellent conversation opener and from now on I plan on using it to open every conversation. With anyone.

Hahaha I've seen this. On my complete set of "The Julie Andrews Hour". Which I got from someone who I see is on your friends list. I shan't say whom. There is Julie singing "Vincent" (my favourite song), and Harry Belafonte singing Leonard Cohen, and Joel Grey (OMG Joel Grey!) and Muppets....
Actually, it seems a little unfair that I have it and you don't.

Posted by: Erbie McInQuack (erbie)
Posted at: August 18th, 2009 06:37 am (UTC)
Edgar Eye

About 20 years ago, my aunts and uncles had an interviewer come in and interview my grandmother and film it. We all got the VHS tape of her interview for Christmas. Maybe you could do that with your grandmother, or maybe not pay someone to do it, but have someone video it while you interview her or something.

I need to get that tape converted to DVD so I can watch it. I miss listening to my Gramma's stories.

Posted by: blahblahblah, whatever (kathrynrose)
Posted at: August 18th, 2009 10:01 am (UTC)

Maybe you could watch The Sound of Music with her.

Posted by: A Story Like Mine Has Never Been Told... (servingsize)
Posted at: August 20th, 2009 12:26 am (UTC)

I dont know if you've seen this: http://kateharding.net/2009/08/19/whom-we-talk-to-when-we-talk-about-fat/ but I imagined you would have interesting thoughts.

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