I’m having an odd day.
I began with this tea, one that I like but had tucked away too long and should have been drinking. It’s not old or anything like that…but has escaped from my vision. We do that, forget a tea in the back of some other tea that we’ve taken to heart.
I shared a pot of Tangerine Guayusa with my granddaughter last night
while we made tea and chocolate dusted toffee and watched ‘The Artist’ on Netflix.
There was the Guranse…so I put it out for the morning pot of tea.
This is a yum Winter tea. It has all the maple black tea taste I remember with a bit of malt. Very nice on a cold day.
Then I read a Facebook note from my daughter. A reminder of something that happened 24 years ago today. A horror.
My daughter and 3 other girls were driving down Skyway from Paradise, CA to Chico. The road is on a ridge with canyons on both sides, quite beautiful. Two lanes up the mountain and two down with a wide buffer between. The division of upward and downward lanes wasn’t even. At times, you could look uphill or downhill on the oncoming traffic.
Katrina turned 17 on Dec. 7th and my daughter was turning 17 on the 12th. I knew the driver a little. The other girl I didn’t know. In fact, I had no idea the girls were going to Chico.
It’s amazing that all 4 girls wore their seat belts in a new convertable. California hadn’t passed a seatbelt law yet.
At some time, on one of the mountain turns…the driver lost control, flipped over and over the median and ended up in the uphill lane upside down. The driver and front seat passanger got out and my daughter and Katrina were trapped in the back.
A fire started and someone stopped with an extinguisher and put out the fire.
A tow truck driver arrived and had a heart attack and died on the spot.
The fire department arrived and used the jaws of life and cut out my daughter and Katrina.
I received a call to get to the hospital in Chico but nobody would say anything else. My son had my car and I couldn’t reach anyone to take me to the hospital for quite a bit…until I found a friend of my mom’s.
Going down Skyway, all we could see was a massive traffic jam for miles and miles…not knowing that this had anything to do with my
At the hospital I was briefed. My daughter was in shock but fine. Katrina was dead. She died instantly. My daughter didn’t know and was not to be told yet, she was still too fragile.
When I was allowed to tell her the next day, she somehow knew. She remembered and was heartbroken. What grief for such a young girl, and what a big heart she has always had full of compassion.
Every year my daughter still misses Katrina. A sweet daughter of Hawaii who lived in a difficult situation at home, but had such a pure heart and deep love for others just like my Annalisa.
I sat with her mother in a bar while she got drunk. Me, drinking coffee, making sure she got home safely. She was mad for awhile that my daughter had lived.
I can’t imagine such sadness.
Memory Eternal Katrina Afong.