"Personal Geographies": "A Collaborative Map"
“Three Generations of Precious Memories, a Collaborative Map”
My grandfather was stationed on St. Simon’s Island, Georgia during WWII and fell in love with the area. When he retired my grandparents moved to Sea Island and then when he died my grandmother, Mimi, moved to St. Simon’s. My nuclear family has a long history of visiting this area from the time I was 13 years old. Then when my adult children were little babies the whole family including my grandmother, Mimi, my parents, and my sister & brother & their families (9 nieces and nephews and ex’s- the “outlaws”) my cousin and various boy & girlfriends, began going to St. Simon’s Island and staying at the Beach Club in the same condos for 2 weeks every summer in June. It was an experience that kept out families very close- all of the cousins got to know each other really well. We loved swimming in the ocean & the pool, going crabbing & cooking them up, visiting Okefenokee Swamp, getting to know the marsh land, eating Georgia peaches, having cocktail hour with the adults etc. etc. So many precious memories were created there!! Mimi died 4 years ago and my nuclear family hasn’t been back since then. So, when I read about the collaborative map project I thought “What a great opportunity!” I got as many family members as I could to write and draw memories on this collaborative map. They initialed their drawings and journaling to distinguish their different experiences. Two of the postcards are from my vintage postcard collection with the other is more recent- from a friend who had heard me talk about our wonderful times there and sent me a postcard when she visited there. Creating this map was a meaningful journey- sitting around various dining room tables, chuckling about good memories & getting teary eyed over some others. What a fabulous gift the making of this map has been for the whole family!!