(I have got countless half-narratives on my computer– I found this one digging through old Word documents and found it to be amusing.)
My mother is one of 12 children, 10 of which are girls. All of the girls got married and birthed sons. I was the first girl born into my family in 10 years with five boys ahead of me and four below me. Northern Minnesota is still a big fan of gender roles but my grandfather, now 94 years old, truly believes that women can do anything men could do– save for run his funeral home or fish or hunt. And that he would be lost in this world if not for his daughters.
When I was 10, my grandfather took the boy cousins fishing on Lake Superior. I was hopelessly excluded—left at home with the aunties and the babies. I threw a fit and demanded that I get to go fishing too. My mother drove me down to the dock and chastised my grandfather for excluding me because of my gender, while I cried at her side. I showed him I was real tough! He finally conceded and let me onto the boat. And I’m pretty certain I hated every minute of it.
One thing is for certain with my grandfather– and that he is the cutest old man on the block.
(Photo credit to my awesome cousin George)