Last night, I accompanied two of my mom’s friends to a screening of Hove, The Wind, a short film about the Armenian Genocide. We all thought the movie was very well done. (It stars Olympia Dukakis and Shirleyann Kaladjian.)
Incredibly, it was an unusually windy night in New York (so windy, that fallen trees closed off main roads and caused power outages throughout the area). The coincidence of the windy night was only one of two during our evening together. The other incident occurred during dinner. About midway through our meal, the American waitress serving us asked if we speak Armenian. She had been listening to our conversation about the genocide and told us her grandmother is also an Armenian Genocide survivor. As we continued talking with her, she revealed that she is fluent speaking, reading and writing both Armenian and Classic Armenian. When I told her about the book project I’m developing about the Armenian Genocide, she offered to help with translating Armenian for me. These events are just two of the wonderful examples of the signs encouraging me to press forward with my work writing the stories of Armenian Genocide survivors.
As today is Mother’s Day in the US, I also thought about how proud my grandfather’s mother, Mary Mesrobian Kalpakian, would be if she could have lived to see her son’s accomplishments and his contributions to the Armenian community in New York area. As I’ve immersed myself in Armenian Genocide literature, including oral histories and scholarly research, I find myself day-dreaming about what my grandfather witnessed and having nightmares about his mother’s and sisters’ fates. This blog and my intended book are in honor of the memory of my great-grandmother and her daughters, my grandfather, and every Armenian who suffered in the Armenian Genocide and its aftermath.