My paternal grandmother is the oldest living relative I have. Growing up, all of the family gatherings we'd ever had were orchestrated by her. She's currently 85(ish) years old and still pretty spry, both mentally and physically. Admittedly, my immediate family living in the suburbs of San Francisco, did not often go into the city and visit with my grandmother that often. I sometimes regret that but I can't change the past. Taking a cue from Richard, Sarah's stepdad, who is an old tv broadcast program coordinator (I think that's his title - he did tv stuff) and who currently does a lot of video editing work for Clackamas County in Oregon, always said that he wished he had the technology and the time to record snippets from the past of his parents and how that's probably one of his biggets regrets. I certainly have the interest and the skill set to do that for my grandmother, and really, for the rest of my family. My cousins, brother and I all got together this past Frday night to come up with interview questions for my grandmother. They ranged from the extremely funny and inappripriate, to much more serious matters -- and we didn't know what kinds of dark memories we were really opening up at the time.
Yesterday, we had our family get-together/potluck and our interview session. My cousin Nick was instrumental in setting everything up and providing the proper interview equipment (like a boom mic) and a good time was had by all. It went off the way I was hoping it would go -- I'd ask a question, and got a lot of family involvement as a result of my grandmother's answers. I think the best feeling int he world was when I asked a question about the war, and the adults of my dad's generation learned a lot about their mom that they never knew. Keeping all those tidbets of short stories/vignette's about this woman's life for future generations to have was my goal. Taping's complete now -- just like foreign films, the end production will have subtitles over the course of the interview. Video's still in progress, and Nick's going to be the one who puts it together, but it feels good to have finally kicked off a project that required a ot of planning/orchestrating.