She passed away peacefully in her sleep last night.
Didn't find out till an hour ago that she'd contracted pneumonia a few weeks ago and had been deteriorating rapidly since then: water in lungs, full of medication, all that jazz. Not fun.
I'm glad she's finally gone.
Some "portraits" of her can be found here and a little snippet here.
The last I saw her was during my short 2-week hop to Switzerland in October 2005;
the last time we spoke was a brief phone call placed when I arrived in the U.S. in July 2006;
the last written communication was the wedding announcement we sent in late September 2006;
The memory of her that I will keep with me is of a particular tradition / interaction we'd have when I was very young: 6 years old or thereabouts. During that time, we went to visit in Switzerland almost yearly, and always during wintertime, because that was when we'd have the long break between school years in Malaysia [unlike the long summer break in the western world]. So the weather would be quite cold, and my grandmother was worried we'd catch cold, what with us not being used to the whole winter concept and bundling up properly against the cold and all....
Her solution - Vicks VapoRub to warm the chest & lungs!
- I looked forward to those "fricsionner" [sp?] sessions, where almost every evening before us kids went to sleep, she'd slather the stuff onto my chest and rub it in,,, then I'd turn over and get the same on my back. MmmmMmMmMMMMmmm! Good touches, given in abundance, contributing to a sense of being loved, of security, of simple happiness. Good times. Simpler times. Happy times.
But, like I said before: I'm glad she's finally gone. I hope she is now at peace, pain-free, perhaps even reunited with grand-papa who went beyond the veil almost 10 years ago.
J'espère que ta place préparé vers ton Seigneur Jésus est tout que tu a espéré qu'elle serait.
[more reflections on death later]