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Date Wednesday, May 02, 2007 9:26:00 AM
Grandpa Marken's 90th Birthday

I recently went to Missouri, out to the Lake of the Ozarks to celebrate my grandfather's 90th birthday. In classic Marken style, my parents flew in from San Jose, CA, my sister flew in from Phoenix, AZ, and I flew in from San Diego, CA.

While waiting for my transfer at the Dallas airport, I was quite surprised to find these huge vending machines for devices like iPods, headphones, and Sony PSP units. My first question was, "Are the batteries fully charged? And - Where is the digital download kiosk so these people can fill up their new mp3 players? Even better... Apple should preload these units with independent music from! Right...

My grandpa and grandma live on her son's 46 acre property, just off the water. Unfortunately, there was a frost a few weeks earlier, so the Dogwood blossoms were unable to bloom. What normally would have been a landscape of white, was rolling hills of brown.

Here is the old barn on the property:

Off on the far end of the property, is the old outhouse:

Just a few trees away, was this clusterfunk of catepillers:

I helped Grandma plant a rose out in front of their house:

Here we have three Gideons... yes, that's Gideon Marken II, Gideon Marken III, and Gideon Marken IV. My dad goes by 'Andy' - from our middle name 'Andrew,' and Grandpa goes by Gid.

The table in the photo was built by my grandpa when he was 15. We were setting it up to use on his 90th birthday, and found the screws pulled through one of the hinges, and one of the wood joints was loose.

Grandpa went out to his tool shed, found the glue and some new screws, and minutes later... the Gideon's had a steady table.

Here's a family photo, with Grandpa, Grandma, my parents and sister:

We had a great visit, met more of the family, and Grandpa looked like he had a very happy 90th birthday party.


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date: 05/02/2007 11:45:47 AM
name: Terodja

Congrats with your grandfather's 90th birthday, dude!!
date: 05/07/2007 09:02:41 PM
name: Kathie Adler

Your pictures brought back memories, Gideon. My grandpa lived in Saratoga Springs, with my grandma, really pretty area. He loved puttering in his garden with my grandmother, and as I looked at your photos, your grandfather even reminded me of my grandpa. Your family is lovely. Your grandfather is adorable. And I'm so glad your grandfather got the 90th birthday he deserved, surrounded by his family. Best wishes, Kathie Adler
date: 05/11/2007 10:44:29 AM
name: gideon

Ah thank you for the replies - looks like I need to check the emailing of the comments off my blog - I didn't see that you both had posted here. :)

Life is truly amazing - it all seems so fast, so short - yet I as a 37 yr old man, standing with my grandpa who is 90, felt like I was just born, that I haven't done anything yet, and that my life has just started. Then upon my return to my home and daily routine, I'm reminded of all the things I've done, the people I've met, the places I've been... and you know what? I'm so excited that there could very well be 53 more years of this life for me to experience. With that much time, I could learn almost anything, I could travel to see so much more, and if I remain engaged and aware, I can continue to be amazed by the universe and accept it's opportunities and challenges.

Here's to everyone's future! Here's a quote and a vocal sample in one of my songs, "When you can do anything, what do you do?" - by Terrence McKenna.

Gideon Marken
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