Golden Grape Vine

In Attire
Photo of necklace placed upon a glass.
Photo of necklace placed upon a glass.

 My last memory of her was of her frail body laying on a hospital bed- tubes and I.Vs were the only things keeping her raggedy breath going. My Grandma Silva was a strong woman, but not a healthy one. Her time on earth ended 10 years ago, but her memory lives on.  The object is less than an inch in size. It symbolizes new beginnings. In 1971 my papa and grandma moved to napa, so my papa bought a golden grape cluster for my grandma to symbolize what would become their forever home. He told me it didn’t fit her right so he worked with Creations By You to add a grapevine and leaves which give curvature and stability to the necklace to keep it from moving.  The necklace was passed down to my mother. She hardly wears it because of its value, but it is a special object which connects her to my Grandmother’s memory. I like having a physical connection to the side of my family I know so little about.  3 generations ago, my great grandparents came to the US from Portugal. Upon moving, they decided to leave all Portuguese heritage behind and convert to Americans. Unfortunately for my family, both my mother and I feel a saddened disconnect from our lineage because it was lost through the generations.  My mom makes some of the recipes my grandma made for her. She thinks it’s important we pass down those recipes and the tradition of family meals/gatherings.    

Place(s): Napa,CA

– Alisha Cilluffo

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant