Friday, 13 July 2012

Inspirational women

Which women have inspired you - and particularly which women over 60?  In my case there are two, who sadly are no longer with me, but I still have many great memories of them both.

The first was my mother, Joy.  She certainly lived up to her name, and even when she was in her eighties she managed to enjoy life to the full. We took her to New England for her 80th birthday treat, as I knew it had long been a dream of hers to go there.  My family emigrated to Canada when I was a child, and my mother had caught her first glimpse of New England from the ship.  She had always wanted to go there and achieved her wish over fifty years later!

Mum enjoying herself on the Cape Cod ferry
Mum had a good sense of humour and was the life and soul of any party that she went to.  As a child, I cannot remember ever hearing her complain, though as an adult I found out that she hadn't always had an easy life. She enjoyed sport and was very proud of being the oldest member of her badminton club, and the fact that she was still playing in her eighties.  I remember foolishly suggesting that she should get herself a shopping trolley. "Don't be ridiculous! They're for old people!" retorted my mother, who was over eighty at the time.  My children used to say that they had two very different grandmothers: one normal one and Gran.

My friend Beryl wasn't a lot younger than my mother and she was another feisty woman.  We met when I first started running in Hyde Park: we discovered that we had a similar sense of humour and soon became great friends.  Beryl was the first to admit that she wasn't the fastest of runners, but she was determined to run the London Marathon to raise money for charity.  I didn't doubt that Beryl would succeed (I had done a lot of long runs with her and was amazed by her stamina) and when I saw her at the finish she looked as fresh as a daisy.  Not only that, but when I went round to her house later on with her other friends for a celebration party, Beryl was dashing around looking after everybody as if she had only run 10k.  Did I mention that Beryl was in her sixties when she achieved this?

Beryl sharing a joke with me and my daughter
Two amazing, inspiring women: do you know of any inspirational women? Please leave your comments below.

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