THE WORLD OF SAMUEL MEEKER, MERCHANT OF PHILADELPHIA, AND GILBERT STUART, AMERICAN PORTRAIT ARTIST

Friday, May 22, 2009

Lovely Lily Grace, Prom night, and Germany


Lily Grace, named after my grandmother ("pure as the lily by the grace of God"), is the direct descendant of Phebe Meeker, twin sister of Samuel Meeker. Phebe Meeker must have been a lovable creature, for her brother to commission a Gilbert Stuart portrait for her birthday!

Prom night last Saturday at Chaminade here in Santa Cruz! Aren't the ladies a picture of beauty and happiness? Most of the girls are seniors, Lily and her friend Ashley (to Lily's left) are juniors.

Lily is half German. Her father is Wilhelm Kley, professor of astrophysics at the Universität Tübingen. We got a divorce late 90s, in eastern Germany, which was not easy. One of the first things my lawyer said to me (paid for by the state, thankyou) was that I would need to get a job. I looked at her, and wondered if I should try to find someone else.... in Germany you need "training" to get a job in a bakery to learn how to wrap the baked goods properly.

In the end I taught English at the Euro-Business-College (EBC) in Jena. The college was located up a hill in a 'schloss' a few kilometers outside of the stadtcentrum; in this residential area the roads became narrower and narrower and there was no parking. On a certain rainy day I obstinately refused to park at the base of the hill like I usually did, and crept up in the car in the driving rain, finally finding a narrow spot next to the wall of a rectangular house. Cool! I thought. Then I heard a LOUD CRUNCH, as the lower side of my car hit a large but low stone strategically placed to stop cars from doing exactly what I was trying to do.

The Man took the car in the end, saying I owed him because of the damage. ...only one story from this hard time.....For the remaining years Lily and I had no car. I tried to live that way when I came back to Ca in Sept 2004, but it was not possible. Even Lily drives now!

Back to my LOVELY LILY. She is the second from the right in the black and white dress. My life would have been only a shade of what it is, if she were not part of my life. I am blessed.
~

4 comments:

The Clever Pup said...

Thanks for allowing me this little peek into your life.

Lily is lovely. Maybe we could set up our kids. Just joking! You are lucky to have her and I'm sure she has happy memories of Germany.

I like the stories below about the Astors and the Vanderbilts. Keep up the good work, Beth.

einbildungskraft said...

Thanks Hazel! Lily goes back to her German family every summer and sometimes Christmas. She has two blond half sisters, Sian 5 and Xenia is 3. Despite the hard times, Willy is a nice person.

Rouchswalwe said...

Hurrah Lily! You're a senior next year! Alles alles Gute und viel Spaß im Sommer!

emikk said...

see how a beautiful Lily can grow "out of the muck" (you know, struggle and strife, loss of car etc.) In a metaphorical sense obviously.

 
Site Meter