an icon

Whatever I’d planned to write about today went out the window when I read the obituaries in the local paper back home. A very, special lady had passed away at the age of 92.

When I grew up, there were oodles of cafés in my town, but one of them was considered the most … posh. Almost every Saturday, my Mum brought me there … she had coffee with her friends and I had something else, a soft drink, probably … and most importantly: a pastry.

Back then, you were served at the table, the waitress brought a tray with pastries and you made your choice from there, along with your order of drinks.

The waitress there, was the most elegant woman I’d ever seen in my life back then! This was long before the word ‘styling’ entered the Swedish language, and at my young age, I thought she looked like a movie star! She also had this way about her … her smile was ‘real’, and she made you feel special … like she really cared about you! Her memory was amazing too! She never needed pen and paper when she took the orders in this crowded café …always remembered who ordered what.

The years went by, this café closed eventually [and unfortunately], she later run the cafeteria in the hospital. I came back, after having lived elsewhere for four years, when I saw her in the hospital lobby. Wouldn’t you know it … after all these years, she remembered me by name and greeted me as if I was a long lost friend! That was who she was … she made people feel good!

I’ve mentioned in an earlier blog post about how a Facebook group has started for my town. This group is amazing in itself, as it now has 2,500 members … that’s almost about how many people live there! Ha ha! No, there are a few more, but still. Just for fun, now that I’d read this obituary, I searched the group for the name of this café and found about fifty posts. Not ONE post about the café without she being mentioned! I wish she could have read or heard about how many sweet things were said about her! Her daughter will now though…

She was an unofficial Härnösand icon!

20 Replies to “an icon”

  1. Hi,
    What a truly remarkable Lady to know, and how good was she to be able to remember names. I agree it is a shame she didn’t know about all the people that appreciated who she was, but you mentioned a daughter, does she know how much her Mum was loved?

    1. Mags,
      Yes, but I don’t think the daughter’s been aware of how much, until now when she joins the group..

      1. That’s great that she has joined the group, she must of been overwhelmed to see how many people appreciated everything her Mum did.

        1. Yes, she wasn’t aware of the group, but I heard my brother’s x-wife had been in contact with her, so she’ll join it 🙂

    1. Yes, that’s what a thought too … a kind of low-profile job, and still everyone in our town has all these nice memories..

  2. She sounds like a remarkable lady, and certainly made an impression on you, Rebekah!
    It just goes to show that it’s not what people do, or how famous they might have been . . . it’s how they made us feel, that we remember them the most. She had a way of making you feel good, and that’s what you remember her for.
    Now her daughter can see, through the group on FB, just how much she touched people’s lives, and how well she was thought of. Lovely memories.

    1. Yes, Internet is wonderful that way … she’ll be moved to see this whole list of comments there on her mother’s passing..

  3. 92 is an impressive lifespan for anyone. I am sure the lady will RIP. It sounds as though this lovely woman enjoyed her life and enjoyed others as well. That is quite a legacy to leave behind when you think about it.

  4. Sounds like a remarkable woman. Malcolm Gladwell in The Tipping Point describes the importance of folks like her to a community. He refers to them as connectors, “a handful of people with a truly extraordinary knack [… for] making friends and acquaintances”

    1. Exactly! When I looked through the group messages, people all remembered her, regardless of AGE. She was a waitress … imagine what she could have done with that capability.

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