Indulging in Reminiscence

Surprise reunion for Gord and Mae Smith at Riverside Glen

By Kristian Partington

Though the world is, in many ways, a drastically different place today compared to 1953, it’s amazing how little some things have changed over the course of six decades. Gord Smith’s face, for one, seems to have remained remarkably familiar during this time, so much so that a mere week after moving into the Village of Riverside Glen, he was approached by a fellow resident.

“Do you know me?” the kind woman asked, and though Jim detected some familiarity, he couldn’t place the face. When she introduced herself as Ena Gibson, he was taken aback. Here was the woman who married his wife Mae’s first cousin, Jim, standing before him in the dining room at his new village, just a short walk away from where Mae made her home in Riverside Glen’s Eramosa neighbourhood. They’d met no more than four or five times long ago and they hadn’t seen each other since 1953, yet here she was and she had another surprise in store.

“A lady came to the table and when I didn’t recognize her she said her name was Grace and a resemblance kicked in,” Gord recalls. 

Grace Logan was the daughter of another of Mae’s cousins, the little girl in Gord and Mae’s 1953 wedding photos who would later name her son Carl after Gord and Mae’s son. Time has a funny way of moving fast, however, and in the past six decades they’d only seen Grace a few times.

“Mae would love to see you,” Gord said simply, and an impromptu family reunion was hastily arranged for the next afternoon with the help of the Riverside Glen team. Gord and Mae’s sons and their wives were able to attend, as were other cousins and Mae’s sister and brother-in-law. All told, 11 people – near strangers, in many ways, bonded by the blood of family – shared fresh cake with coffee and tea and countless stories from the decades gone by. It was a day to indulge in reminiscence, says Gord, and “this all happened because Ena and I share the same dining area in the village.”

“I wish to express my sincere thanks and kudos to the management and staff of the Village of Riverside Glen,” Gord says. They helped arrange the quick reunion and now, every day offer new opportunities to revisit old memories and create new ones.